Point guard D’Angelo Russell knows all about facing adversity after his first season with the Los Angeles Lakers. The rookie faced all sorts of challenges in his first year under the bright lights of Los Angeles and hopes to be the next superstar for the storied franchise with Kobe Bryant heading into retirement.
Russell appeared in a commercial for BBVA Compass this week and talked about his basketball journey and how he’s challenged the status quo along the way:
“You’ve got to have a passion. You’ve got to have an edge of reaching your full potential. It may take three years, it may take one year, it may take 10, but the process of getting is what’s so fun about it.
“And then adversity sets in and you feel like you’re on your last leg. Find a way to get through. Never quit. And it can definitely take you a long way.”
Coming into the 2015 NBA Draft, the Lakers owned the second overall pick and weren’t letting anyone know which player they were intending on taking once the Minnesota Timberwolves made their choice at number one overall. Timberwolves didn’t surprise anyone by taking Karl-Anthony Towns.
All signs pointed to the Lakers going with the safe pick in Duke’s Jahlil Okafor. The Lakers franchise has a tradition of Hall of Famers at the center position with Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Shaquille O’Neal making Okafor a likely choice for Los Angeles.
In a surprising move, the Lakers drafted Russell out of Ohio State paving the way for the next great point guard in the Los Angeles. Russell has a long road ahead as he tries to fill Kobe’s shoes while attempting to turn this franchise around over the next few years.