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Lakers Sign Darren Collison, Stanley Johnson To 10-Day Contracts

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) - In an attempt to tide the constant COVID-19 issues plaguing their roster, the Lakers signed two more players to 10-day contracts on Friday, bringing journeymen Darren Collison and Stanley Johnson onto the team.

Both players signed on 10-day hardship exception contracts, as the Lakers have had more than half of their roster spend time in COVID-19 protocols.

The team is still missing Trevor Ariza, Kent Bazemore, Malik Monk, Avery Bradley and Austin Reaves, though they did just get both Dwight Howard and Talen Horton-Tucker back prior to Thursdays' matchup against the San Antonio Spurs.

Collison, now 34, hails from Rancho Cucamonga, where he played his high school basketball with Etiwanda High School before playing for the UCLA Bruins from 2005 to 2009. While with UCLA, he was a two-time First Team All Pac-10 Player. Collison played with current-Laker Russell Westbrook during their time at UCLA. He was selected with the 21st overall pick in 2009 by the New Orleans Hornets, where he was named NBA All-Rookie First Team in 2010.

He spent time with the Indiana Pacers, Dallas Mavericks, Los Angeles Clippers and Sacramento Kings before returning to the Pacers until he retired in 2019. Collison stated that he would only come out of retirement for one of his two hometown teams - the Clippers or the Lakers.

Over the 10 years of his career, Collison averaged 12.5 points, 2.7 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game.

Johnson, 25-years-old, is also a Southern California native, originally from Anaheim. He played high school basketball at Mater Dei High School, winning California Mr. Basketball in 2014. He attended the University of Arizona, where he was named 1st Team All Pac-12 in 2015 and was awarded the Julius Erving Award in the same season, given to the best collegiate small forward in the nation. He skipped the final three seasons of his collegiate career.

He was selected with the 8th overall pick in 2015 by the Detroit Pistons. He would stay with Detroit up until 2019, when he started to bounce around the NBA on various contracts. He spent time with the Pelicans and Toronto Raptors before signing with the Lakers G League affiliate prior to the 2021 season. Johnson left to sign a 10-day deal with the Chicago Bulls, when they were dealing with a similar COVID-19 outbreak, though he never played in a game with the team.

Over his seven years, Johnson has averaged 6.2 points, 3.1 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game. However, during his six games with the South Bay Lakers, Johnson showed glimpses of the greatness he displayed prior to his NBA career, averaging 15.3 points, 6.7 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 2.2 steals per game.

The Lakers have also signed Jemerrio Jones and Isaiah Thomas to 10-day hardship exception contracts in recent weeks, as they continue to fight to keep their heads above water as the NBA season nears its halfway point.

While Jones has yet to see any game action with the Lakers, Thomas, in his second stint with the purple and gold, was thrown into the fray immediately scoring 19 points in his first game in 2021.

They are just 16-17 this season.

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