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Kentavious Caldwell-Pope to take D’Angelo Russell’s old Lakers number

In this March 24, 2017, photo, Detroit Pistons' Kentavious Caldwell-Pope takes a shot against the Orlando Magic during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Orlando, Fla. A person with knowledge of the deal tells The Associated Press Tuesday night, July 11, 2017 that the Los Angeles Lakers have signed free agent guard Caldwell-Pope to a one-year, $18 million contract. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
AP Photo/John Raoux

After four seasons as a member of the Detroit Pistons, shooting guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope agreed to a one-year deal worth $18 million with the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday. In making the news official the Lakers also revealed what number Caldwell-Pope will wear next season.

Caldwell-Pope, who wore No. 5 in Detroit, will take the No. 1 last worn by D’Angelo Russell. Russell was traded to Brooklyn along with center Timofey Mozgov in late June, with the Lakers receiving center Brook Lopez and the 27th overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft — which turned out to be forward Kyle Kuzma.

Russell was criticized by Lakers team president Magic Johnson in the aftermath of the trade, saying that the team needed a leader at the point. Russell responded by calling Johnson’s criticism “irrelevant.”

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