The Sparks welcomed center Jantel Lavender back to Los Angeles today after she finished playing in the Turkish League Finals for Yakin Dogu.
“Jantel is a key part of our rotation and we’re excited to have her back in a Sparks uniform,” Sparks General Manager and Executive Vice President Penny Toler said.
Lavender will bring depth to the Sparks frontcourt as the team played their first four games without her, their first three without forward Candace Parker (back), and are still without rookie center Maria Vadeeva, who remains overseas. Lavender was an All Star in 2015 and won the Sixth Woman of the Year Award in 2016, playing a pivotal role in the Sparks 2016 WNBA Championship run. She’s averaged 9.0 points and 4.7 rebounds per game in her seven-year WNBA career.
In a corresponding move, Los Angeles waived guard Karlie Samuelson who was signed by the Sparks on May 19 as a replacement player under the hardship cap exception. In four games, Samuelson averaged 3.5 points per game and shot 40 percent from 3-point range.
Los Angeles now has 11 players on their roster and 10 on the active roster. The Sparks host the Minnesota Lynx Sunday June 3 at 2 p.m. PST at the Staples Center.