One of the best stories to come out of Los Angeles Lakers Summer League was the rise of point guard Alex Caruso. Originally an afterthought going into the summer, Caruso parlayed an excellent summer into a two-way contract with the Lakers.
This two-way deal will allow the Lakers to develop Caruso with their G-League affiliate, the South Bay Lakers, without him taking a roster spot. They will also have the ability to call him up to the main roster whenever they choose to throughout the season.
As such, Caruso will be in Lakers training camp next month and in an interview with Colin Deaver of KAGS News, Caruso spoke about being so close to being in the NBA and how that motivates him:
“Just the fact that I’m so close. I’ve put in so much work from high school to now. Each year that passes it becomes more of a reality that I have a legit shot to play in the NBA and that fuels me to keep going, to play even harder, work even harder, take diet and sleep more seriously. Just being ready to take advantage of the opportunity when it comes.”
Caruso’s numbers in Summer League don’t jump off the page as he averaged only 7.4 points and 3.9 assists, but his impact stretched far beyond the box score and the Lakers took note of that.
It was his performance against the Sacramento Kings that caught everyone’s attention. With Lonzo Ball sitting, Caruso outplayed top-5 pick De’Aaron Fox, finishing with 19 points and nine assists. Though he never matched that performance again, he was constantly making plays down the stretch of close games be it a big shot, assist, or defensive play.
The Lakers see the potential in Caruso and if he can develop in the G-League, he will soon realize his dream of playing in the NBA.