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Lakers sign Darius Johnson-Odom to non-guaranteed contract

September 14, 2012|By Ben Bolch
  • Darius Johnson-Odom scored an average of 18.3 points per game in his senior season at Marquette.
Darius Johnson-Odom scored an average of 18.3 points per game in his senior… (Andy Manis / Associated…)

The Lakers signed second-round draft pick Darius Johnson-Odom to a non-guaranteed contract and extended an invitation to training camp.

“They’re a little guard heavy so he has to play really well to make the team,” said Lance Young, Johnson-Odom’s agent.

The Lakers were high enough on Johnson-Odom to pay the Dallas Mavericks about $500,000 so they could move up and select the shooting guard from Marquette with the 55th pick in the draft. But Johnson-Odom struggled with his shooting touch in summer league games and the Lakers signed Jodie Meeks to become their primary backup shooting guard.

The 6-foot-2 Johnson-Odom averaged 3.8 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.4 assists in 15.8 minutes during the summer league.

“He didn’t play how he would have liked,” Young said.

Young said he had expected Johnson-Odom to be an immediate contributor for the Lakers this season after he averaged 18.3 points during his senior season and earned first team All-Big East Conference honors.

Recent developments have complicated those hopes.

“After the Dwight Howard trade and signing Jodie Meeks, it made it a little bit tougher for him,” Young said. “The odds are stacked against him a little bit versus a few weeks ago.”

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