Lakers sign F Turiaf

Updated: January 18, 2006, 7:43 PM ET

LOS ANGELES - Less than six months after undergoing heart surgery, rookie forward Ronny Turiaf signed a two-year contract with the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday.

Financial terms were not disclosed.

The 22-year-old Turiaf, who was selected in the second round of the 2005 draft, was diagnosed with an enlarged aortic root last summer and underwent surgery on July 26 to repair the root and preserve his aortic valve.

Doctors estimated his recovery time between six and 12 months, but Turiaf has made a faster-than-expected return.

The 6-10 forward out of Gonzaga was named West Coast Conference Player of the Year his senior season, averaging 15.9 points and 9.5 rebounds. He ranks fourth all-time at Gonzaga in scoring (1,723 points), rebounds (859) and blocks (179) and is the all-time leader in free throws (643).

Most recently, Turiaf played for the Yakima Sun Kings of the Continental Basketball Association, where he averaged 13.0 points and 6.3 rebounds in nine games.

This story is from's automated news wire. Wire index