On Monday, Lonzo Ball’s potential matchup with De’Aaron Fox was supposed to be the story.
That was before it was announced that a groin injury would not allow Ball to take the court for the Los Angeles Lakers in the summer league matchup against the Sacramento Kings.
Little did everyone know that Ball’s replacement, an unheralded point guard out of Texas A&M, would steal the spotlight.
Alex Caruso, who wasn’t selected in the 2016 NBA Draft, dazzled the fans in Las Vegas by scoring 18 points on 7-of-9 shooting (4 of 5 from 3-point range) to go with 9 assists, 4 rebounds and 4 steals. He made several highlight-reel plays as he helped the Lakers rally for a 95-92 win.
Caruso was rewarded with a two-way contract, as announced by the Lakers on Thursday afternoon.
OFFICIAL: Lakers Sign Alex Caruso to Two-Way Contract
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) July 13, 2017
Per team policy, terms of the deal were not released.
As a two-way player, the College Station, Texas native can spend a maximum of 45 days with the Lakers, not including any time before the start of the South Bay Lakers’ training camp or after the conclusion of their G League season.
The 2017-18 season will be the first that two-way contracts will be implemented in the NBA. Players under such contracts are paid a corresponding daily amount based on the number of days they play in each league.
To be eligible for a two-way contract, a player can only have four or fewer years of NBA experience, and the contract can be for no more than two seasons. Franchises are limited to two players under two-way contracts at any given time, aside from their 15-man regular season roster.
Caruso spent four seasons at Texas A&M (2012-16) and earned Second-Team All-SEC honors and was an SEC All-Defensive Team selection in 2015-16.