Matt Barnes finally has a home. And it happens to be his home.
After announcing he had agreed to a two-year deal with Toronto earlier this week, Orlando and Toronto could not make the deal work under the salary cap. Both the Magic and the Raptors had used up all their trade exceptions and salary exceptions this year. A sign and trade would not work.
So Barnes remained in limbo. Until now, that is.
Barnes, the tough-minded, defensive player that endeared himself to so many Magic fans, signed a two-year $3.6 million contract with the Lakers. For Los Angeles, the team gets a very good role player who will defend. He should help the two-time defending champions off the bench and to spell Ron Artest.
The Lakers certainly became more formidable as they look for their second three-peat in the past 10 years. Even with Miami, this move makes a second title defense more realistic.
For Barnes, he gets a raise and gets to play in his hometown. Barnes was born in Sacramento, California (northern California, I know) and went to school at UCLA. He also gets a chance to win a title, which is something he covets. The only thing he does not get out of this deal is a long-term commitment from the team he signed with.
Again, best of luck to Barnes in Los Angeles. Hopefully Orlando will be seeing him in the Finals.