Matt Ryan survives cuts, makes Lakers’ roster

It was just last year that Matt Ryan got pulled off the literal graveyard shift. Now he’ll be on the Lakers’ opening night roster.

The 25-year-old survived training camp cuts on Saturday, giving the Lakers a shooter with 6-foot-7 size on the wings. Ryan hit 37.5% of his 3-point attempts during the preseason, including a 6-for-9 showing when he finished with 20 points in a victory over the Golden State Warriors.

Coach Darvin Ham came away from the performance impressed, saying a few days later, “hopefully he’ll be a Laker long-term.” Now, he’ll get his shot. So far, Ryan has played in just one official NBA game and scored three points.

Ryan, who got his NBA start on a two-way contract last season with the Boston Celtics, celebrated on Twitter: “All I can say is, LETS GO LAKESHOW!! Whether it’s a day, a month, or a year, you’ll get my absolute best every single day. The real work starts now! Thank you @Lakers for this special opportunity”.

A New York native, Ryan has a colorful underdog story of getting into the league: He didn’t make the G League Bubble in 2021, and instead worked as a delivery driver and worked for his grandparents’ monument business in a cemetery.

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“I was just getting bored going to the gym four or five hours a day and not really doing anything else,” Ryan said recently of his pre-NBA experience. “So I kind of just wanted to make myself busy, make a little money and it was humbling. The whole time, not knowing when I was going to get a call or if I was going to get a call. But I just stayed ready. I worked even harder. And now it’s a good story.”

The Lakers waived Shaquille Harrison, Jay Huff and Nate Pierre-Louis to meet the regular season roster requirements of 15 players and a pair of two-way contract players (Cole Swider and Scotty Pippen Jr.).

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