The Los Angeles Lakers understood that the 2017 NBA Draft was a major step in the right direction for the franchise, with Rob Pelinka and Magic Johnson building towards the 2018 free agency class. For a young team like the Lakers, the Summer League is an excellent place to see how returning players are developing, as well as get a first look at the new draftees.
All four 2017 draft picks are set to compete in the upcoming 2017 Las Vegas Summer League, with the Lakers formally announcing their roster. Jed Buechler will reside as the head coach, with assistant coaches Mark Madsen, Miles Simon and Brian Keefe.
The Los Angeles Lakers announced today their roster for the 2017 NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, highlighted by 2017 NBA All-Rookie Second Team selection Brandon Ingram and the second overall pick in this year’s NBA Draft, Lonzo Ball. Joining Ingram and Ball are current Lakers Ivica Zubac and David Nwaba, in addition to Lakers draft-day acquisitions Thomas Bryant, Josh Hart and Kyle Kuzma.
All eyes will certainly be on Ingram and Ball as they look to be the two players set to lead the Lakers into next season. Zubac, meanwhile, is set to take a major step in development during the 2017 Las Vegas Summer League, while also falling under the wing of All-Star center Brook Lopez.
Nwaba recently received the news that the Lakers exercised his $1.3 million option for next season. He demonstrated immense defensive abilities in his limited opportunities, while steadily working on his offensive arsenal.
Joining these players are 2016 D-League MVP Vander Blue, center Alec Brown, guard Alex Caruso, guard Matt Thomas, forward Travis Wear, guard Gabe York and guard P.J. Dozier.
Dozier went undrafted in the 2017 NBA Draft, but quickly signed a deal at the conclusion of draft night. York was a standout scorer during his time with the University of Arizona, with creative handles and deceptiveness off the dribble.
Blue has two previous stints in the NBA, including a three-game appearance with the Lakers during the 2014-15 season. He had a phenomenal 2016 season in terms of exposure, as he averaged 24.8 points, 5.1 rebounds and 3.0 assists on his way to his MVP season.
The Lakers open up play at the 2017 Las Vegas Summer League with their July 7 showdown against the Los Angeles Clippers. They then face the Boston Celtics on July 8, followed by an interesting showdown on July 10 against the Sacramento Kings.