Apr 28, 2013; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Lakers small forward Earl Clark (6) looses control of the ball against the San Antonio Spurs in game four of the first round of the 2013 NBA playoffs at the Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Lakers: Should Earl Clark be Re-signed?

In a word: absolutely. Earl Clark was the Lakers Shawn Marion. Even though Mike D’Antoni coached Marion, he appeared to have no idea how to best use Clark, yet more often than not Clark was an impact player on the floor. His versatility make him a must sign for Lakers management, regardless of Coach D’Antoni.

In a short span Jordan Hill made a big enough impression on management to earn a new contact. Considering Hill missed most of the year with an injury, Lakers management might be wary to pay for another forward even though their skill sets are so different.

Clark averaged career highs in Games played and started, minutes played, rebounds, points, field goals. . .You get the picture. Given the opportunity Earl Clark excelled. When first given the opportunity when Pau went down with injury, Clark burst onto the purple and gold scene with 34 points against San Antonio.

Clark could go somewhere else and earn a contract, but I would compare him to two Lakers guards who did not come back to the Lakers last year. Ramon Sessions opted for free agency rather than come back to the dysfunctional Lakers. He ended up a prominent player. . .in Charlotte. And Andrew Goudelock was not brought back by the Lakers. . .until just before the playoffs. He wound up being the NBA D League MVP. The similarity between all 3 is they had value. When Sessions was aggressive he was an impact player. Goudelock could flat out score. And Clark does all facets of the game well. He is an excellent rebounder and shooter and passer for his size, and he defends multiple positions.

The Lakers need a way to get better. But letting a player go who now has familiarity with what it takes to succeed personally in a Lakers uniform is not the answer.

Dick's Sporting Goods presents "Hell Week":

Tags: Earl Clark Los Angeles Lakers

  • Rigged4fun

    There is no question in my mind that Earl Clark should be resigned. The question comes down to how is MDA going to use him. If D’Antoni pushes Earl out to the wing again, he will essentially make him ineffective. Clark is not a spot up shooter. He needs to be in the flow of the game to contribute. If Earl works hard on his strength and inside game this summer, I think he could blossom to the likes of a Tayshawn Prince level.

  • Matt Miller

    I agree Clark does play better in the flow. He feeds off that energy. But a lot of value is that he has the ability to play out on the wing. He has improved his outside shot since his rookie year. If he gets to Tayshaun Prince level Clark will be an absolute steal.
    -Thanks for the comment