The Los Angeles Lakers finished with the fourth worst record in the NBA, yet they were able to grab the No. 2 overall pick in the draft in the lottery. That gives the Lakers a plethora of options, but drafting the wrong player could add another unwanted year (or two or three) to LA’s rebuilding process. Here are players they need to avoid in the draft:
Stats: 19.3 ppg, 5.0 apg, 5.7 rpg
Russell burst on the scene for the Buckeyes and was their best player from day one this season, and consistently dominated everyone they played at the college level. Scouts love his skills, leadership, and assertiveness, but his limited athleticism and lackluster defense put a cap on how good he can be in the NBA. The Lakers are looking to draft their next superstar with this pick, and Russell won't turn into that guy.
Stats: 17.7 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 5.9 apg
Mudiay would have been leading the SMU Mustangs for Larry Brown this season, but decided to play in China for a year instead. He’s displayed his all-around game against full grown men, something the top prospects on this list can’t say. However, his total lack of shooting ability could turn him into a poor man's version of Rajon Rondo.
Stats: 6.9 ppg, 2.8 rpg
Porzingis would’ve been a first round pick in the draft if he would’ve come out last year, but decided to wait another year to improve his game. The seven-footer has emerged as one of the more offensively polished big men in this draft, but teams want to see him be more physical. The Lakers need someone who can make an immediate impact, and Porzingis isn't that guy.
If you're the Lakers, DON'T OVERTHINK IT. Take either Kentucky center Karl-Anthony Towns or Duke center Jahlil Okafor (whoever the Timberwolves don't take with the No. 1 overall pick), unquestionably the top two prospects in the draft.
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