Malone/PaytonESPN is reporting that Karl Malone today verbally agreed to join the Lakers this upcoming season, just days after Gary Payton made the same commitment.

Malone will play for a mere $1.5 million, nearly $18 million less than he made last season as a member of the Utah Jazz. While he could of have signed for more money in San Antonio or even Sacramento, the “Mailman” was lured to Los Angeles by the desire to win a championship, and the chance to play along side Gary Payton, Kobe Bryant, and Shaquille O’Neal.

The Lakers starting lineup, on paper, could be the most formidable in league history, with four potential Hall of Famers.

Payton and Malone’s agreement to play for very little money for a run at a championship is proof positive that for some players do play to win first.

With these two signings, the Lakers have addressed their two biggest weaknesses from last season, a power forward who can shoot the jumper and rebound in Malone, and a point guard with the stellar offensive and defensive skills of Gary Payton. And they did it all for just over $6 million.

News Link: ESPN – “Malone makes move, heads to Lakers”