Stephenson is seeking a return to the NBA, Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports reports. Stephenson is reportedly "willing to work out to prove his value" after playing in the Chinese Basketball Association. With the Flying Leopards, he averaged 26.7 points (52 FG%) and 7.4 rebounds. In 2018-19, he played with the Lakers, averaging 7.2 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.1 assists in 16.5 minutes.
Stephenson signed a one-year, $4 million contract with the Liaoning Flying Leopards of the Chinese Basketball Association, Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports reports. Fair or not, Stephenson seems like he's always been destined to play for a team called the "Flying Leopards," and he'll get his opportunity next season after failing to secure an NBA contract as a free agent. The 28-year-old journeyman had trouble fitting in with the Lakers last season, though he did shoot a respectable 37.1 percent from beyond the arc, well above his career average of 31.5 percent.
Stephenson will come off the bench Thursday night against Golden State. Stephenson will serve as a reserve after starting three of the last four contests for the Lakers. Alex Caruso enters the starting lineup at shooting guard while Kentavious Caldwell-Pope gets the nod at small forward.
Stephenson put up zero points (0-7 FG, 0-4 3Pt), two rebounds, one assist and one steal in 16 minutes Sunday in the Lakers' 130-102 win over the Pelicans. Stephenson stepped in for LeBron James (groin) in the starting five but didn't do much to aid the Lakers' winning effort. The Lakers got a big game off the bench from Reggie Bullock (18 points in 23 minutes), who was returning from a four-game absence due to a foot injury. Given that Bullock had been a starting wing for the Lakers prior to getting hurt, it's possible that he replaces Stephenson on the top unit in Tuesday's game in Oklahoma City.
Stephenson will start in Sunday's game against the Pelicans, Mike Trudell of the Lakers' official site reports. Stephenson's move into the starting five comes in place of Lebron James, who has been shut down for the remainder of the season. This move could last for the remaining five games. Stephenson is averaging 27.3 minutes per game over his last four games, and could see an even larger role with the starters.
Last 7 Games
|3 Year Avg||56||180||42.9||49||32.7||47||66.2||457||8.16||937|