When the Los Angeles Lakers selected D’Angelo Russell with the second overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, many looked at him as the possible heir apparent to Kobe Bryant.
The coaches and front office believe he has superstar potential and could be the person to finally take the torch.
Training camp has just gotten underway and Kobe has been highly complimentary of the rookie, saying that Russell already has his trust because of his work ethic according to Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News:
.@kobebryant on @Dloading: "He has my trust already because he’s a gym rat."
— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) October 1, 2015
One thing that has always been said about Kobe Bryant is that players have to earn his trust. People like Derek Fisher, Pau Gasol, and Metta World Peace always had the trust of Kobe because he knew he could go to war with them and they would give him everything they had.
Russell already gaining Kobe’s trust is an excellent sign for the rookie as he looks to make an impact early on this season. Kobe has already complimented his poise as a point guard, and head coach Byron Scott seems to be favoring a lineup featuring the two together.
There is still a long ways to go for Russell to really burst on to the scene, but early signs are encouraging. If the Lakers have indeed found their next big star in Russell, the team will be making a major leap very soon in the NBA.