The Los Angeles Lakers only have a small mid-level exception and the ability to sign players to a veteran's minimum, so their free agent targets not named Dwight Howard won't be more than role players. Charlotte Bobcats free agent Byron Mullens is one such player that Los Angeles has interest in, according to a source of ESPNLA's Dave McMenamin.
The Lakers reached out to Mullens shortly after the free agency frenzy began Sunday night. Mullens, who will enter his fifth season in the NBA but is just 24 years old, is an unrestricted free agent after the Bobcats declined to extend a qualifying offer to him this summer.
With only a mid-level exception worth $3.2 million and veteran minimum contracts available for the Lakers to dole out, it's unlikely they make any huge splashes in free agency outside of re-signing Howard.
Mullens could fill a need for Los Angeles with or without Howard. The team's depth in the paint crumbled and forced Earl Clark to emerge as a prominent rotation player last season. Clark is a free agent and could command too much money for the Lakers to re-sign him, making a signing like Mullens necessary.
Averaging 10.6 points and 6.4 rebounds in 2012-13, Mullens flashed confidence but was inefficient in doing so. He shot just 38.5 percent from the field yet took 10.6 shots per game -- 3.9 of those attempts, or 37 percent, were three-pointers.