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Earl Clark: 'I want to be a Laker' next season

April 29, 2013|By Mike Bresnahan
  • Earl Clark opened some eyes with his play earlier this season, but faltered toward the end, especially in the playoffs.
Earl Clark opened some eyes with his play earlier this season, but faltered… (Jeff Gross / Getty Images )

Earl Clark was in line for a substantial pay raise after breaking free of an otherwise mundane four-year career.

Then came March and April.

The Lakers forward lost his spot in the starting lineup when Pau Gasol returned from a foot injury; Clark also lost his scoring touch. He averaged only 3.5 points in four playoff games, including a spot start in Game 4 after Metta World Peace was unable to play.

Clark, 25, made $1.2 million this season and would return to the Lakers as a free agent if he didn’t want too much of a raise.

"I want to be a Laker," he said Monday. "I had a lot of fun this season. It’s the first season I got an opportunity to play and just show people, the world, what I can do. I hope everything works out and I come back. I definitely don’t want to leave here being on one of the worst Laker teams in history. I don't want to be a part of that."

Clark averaged 10.6 points and 8.1 rebounds in January and February but dropped to 5.9 points and 4.3 rebounds in March and April.

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Mike D'Antoni proud of team, despite 'doomed' season

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