With less than one week before the 2021 NBA Draft, the Los Angeles Lakers are in the home stretch of their evaluation process.
The Lakers have been conducting group workouts with several prospects the past few weeks, getting extended looks at players like Trey Murphy III, Jaden Springer and Nah’Shon “Bones’ Hyland, among others. Their most recent group was highlighted by Alabama shooting guard Joshua Primo.
Primo is known for his sweet shooting stroke and talked about what makes the Lakers such an intriguing landing spot.
“Just being able to come into a place where you know so many greats, all-time greats have played,” Primo said. “Where you know that there’s a lot of information at your disposal coming in so young and being able to learn from so many great minds of the game. And then just working against guys who are looking at being Hall of Famers. It’s an amazing place to be to start off your career, it’s a great jumpstart for sure.”
The guard also reflected on his performance in the workouts. “I thought the workout went OK. I think what I wanted to do was win every game, that’s the biggest thing for me. Competing hard, I think our team, the three guys that we had, it was really good.
“It was competitive, we worked hard and that’s all you can really ask for coming into a workout, giving your best effort and trying to win every game. So I think from that standpoint it went pretty well, didn’t win everything which is what you want to do but came out I think on top for sure.”
The Alabama product was already being mocked in the first round by most talent evaluators, yet he still decided to participate in the annual NBA Draft Combine this year in Chicago. Primo explained that his love for competition drove his decision. “I love to compete. I think that’s the biggest thing. First and foremost, it’s fun to compete against guys that are in the same position as you and then also just I feel like I have something to prove coming out, every time I step on the floor. So I think it’s just another chance to show that.”
Primo compares himself to Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
Incoming rookies will normally try to ask current NBA players about life in the league, and Primo revealed he was able to reach out to a fellow Canadian.
“One person that I’d say I’ve been able to is Shai Gilgeous-Alexander from OKC,” Primo said. “He’s Canadian so I’ve been able to talk to him a little bit, he’s just giving me just a little bit of knowledge on how to go about this process, this draft process. I’ll probably talk to him again when I do get drafted and then figure out what I‘m gonna do from there. Always it’s a great opportunity to just continue to talk to people that have done it before so you can kind of get a heads up.”
Although Primo’s best skill is his perimeter shooting, he noted he sees a few similarities in his game compared to Gilgeous-Alexander. “I think the way he’s able to slither around on the court kind of just, being at his frame, the 6’6”, 6’5” with the crazy wingspan and his handle being able to get to the rim, I think that’s something that I want to be able to do coming into the league.
“I think what he’s able to do really well is probe off ball screens and that’s something I’m looking to show as well. I think there are some similarities, not necessarily that I showed when I was at Alabama but something I definitely have in my game.”
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