Lakers News: Byron Scott Discusses D’Angelo Russell’s Ideal Minutes
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The discussion about the minutes of rookie D’Angelo Russell have been ongoing seemingly since the outset of the regular season.

Many fans were frustrated that Russell would sit out entire fourth quarters, but head coach Byron Scott maintained that the second overall pick had to earn his minutes and would not get thrown out on the court just because of his draft status.

Russell’s play has begun to improve in the last couple of games and his minutes have seen an uptick as a result. According to Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News, Scott has an idea of the minutes range he wants for Russell:

That final quote from Scott lines up with what he has been saying throughout the season. He won’t give Russell minutes just because he’s the second pick as Russell will have to earn them. If his play of late continues, that should be no problem for Russell.

Against the Toronto Raptors, Russell dropped a career-high 17 points, and he followed that up with an impressive 13 point, nine rebound, six assist performance against the Portland Trail Blazers. Russell seems to be getting more comfortable in his role on the floor and his play is a reflection of that.

Things have been a little bumpy early on in the career of Russell, but he has handled it well. If he continues on this path, his minutes will be right where they should, and hopefully the questions about whether the Lakers made the correct choice will begin to disappear.

The last part of that quote is disappointing to me. It seems just like something a little kid would say when he has to get the last word in. I would hate to play for a guy like that.

  • Problem with this team is simple and despite my critiscm of him it’s not Byron although I would prefer a better coach. It’s expectations that were set on this team and Kobe. First of all the FO and fanbase was delusional to think this team could compete for a playoff spot. We have a defensive coach with 1 or 2 defensive players on the entire roster, we’re extremely young with few mentors to guide them. I like others was wrong to think Kobe would be a good mentor for our young players sure he can show them things in practice like footwork and how to attack a player 1 on 1 in different situations. But on the court there’s nobody else but Kobe that matters when he is playing after saying ” scoring 25 points won’t help our young guys.” You preceded to follow up that message of wisdom with 27 percent shooting night on 22 shots as if you were in some kind of rhythm. Worst problem of all which will come to a boiling point on our team if this doesn’t change is the guy we drafted is the exact opposite. He wants to make his teammates and enjoy playing with them as well, he concerned about building relationships with his teammates this something that has no value in kobes approach to the game. But at the end of the day the FO has drafted well and that’s about it, Mitch and others saying before season ” they expect Kobe to be Kobe” made us fans think they had seen enough to think he could still play at all-star level. That is not the case…..even last year when he shot terrible I saw enough to say to myself he could still play two more years, he looked bouncy like he still played with a ton of energy and could will the team on at times( remember his baseline reverse against Matt Barnes). This year he has dropped off a cliff in terms of his play no legs, zero athleticism, which is understandable at his age we just didn’t expect this from the black mamba. Finally what makes this all so terrible is he’s playing like all the sudden a miracle is going to happen and he is going to start playing at a elite level, forcing threes, not getting back on defense, and then having the nerve to call out the ” young guys.”

  • It means that nothing will change. If Russell isn’t putting in a game-changing performance, he’s getting subbed out.

  • Totally agree with this make him earn his minutes. Clarkson had to earn his and it helped him to get better. I see the internet coaches think they know better. However Byron has the development of Kyre, C. Paul and J. Clarkson on his resume. Any of the internet coaches calling for Byron to be fired. Care to share their coaching resume and credentials?

  • Bryon how do you expect Dangelo to get comfortable and play stress free? What you just said is like someone whos at work and their boss is just standing looking over his shoulder seeing if he makes any mistakes. Let the young guns play freely so they can develop naturally instead of feeling like they on the edge.

  • So if Russell is missing assignments. Should Byron keep him in and allow him to keep making the same mistake?

  • And you dont think that’s being done? Sometimes you have to sit a guy down. Let him get a view looking in from the outside. Let him see what he cant see or notice. Looking from the inside in the heat of battle. Russell has never played over 31 games in a season. We have over 60 something games left. he going to get all the playing time he can ask for and then some.

  • BScott quit saying it’s not me its you- typical love hate relationship.

    Instead of building up the young bucks BScotts tearing them down- enough with the swaggy P treatment.

    Set a standard and stick with it, this is getting out of control.

  • Gotta vent somehow. Sure it felt good to get ALL that off your chest. WOOSA

  • well Russel did say a few weeks ago byron has not told him what he needs to do to get more minutes. so that is straight from the horses mouth. and honestly i dont see much other than him pacing the sidelines with his arms crossed.

  • Who on the team will do better? Every PG, guard, SF and PF kills us nightly.

  • BS should realize his #2 rookie is playing better these past couple of games, give the kid a break he needs to be on the court to learn.

  • Everyone misses assignments on this team. Kobe makes no effort to get back on defense half the time after tossing up a brick. Or he will argue with the refs on a phantom call. Great example Scott condoning.

  • The kid is playing better , lets stop with the mind games. I’ll second that , who would really want to play for this guy. With all the financial flexibility the Lakers have , I have a feeling we will have a dismal FA acquisition in 2016 if coach remains.

  • Russell, I didn’t think this team was playoff bound. I also didn’t think Kobe would go out this way ( he should really give way to our young rookies and think player development) Kobe trying to take it into his own hands isn’t helping. Personally its mostly on Coach Byron Scott , for not preparing this team during the offseason, for always being a Kobe “Yes” man and inspight some saying he reached the finals twice, that doesn’t cut it. He is doing an awful job with the Lakers and whatever ability some guys think he has , we see a different Byron in Lakerland.

  • Ok , I read your first sentence and thought you said “its not Byron”

  • The kid has never played more than 31 games in a season. We have like 68 games left. He going to get all the playing time he wants and then some.

  • But were not talking about Kobe. Were talking about Russell learning the game at the pro level.

  • Can somebody please explain to me why people are comparing the development of clarkson and Russell. I don’t understand of course clarkson started out not playing he was the 46th pick, that is not comparable to being the 2nd.

  • I’m not trying to create rumors, but do you realize the front office has enough cap space to keep this year’s team, add a lottery pick, sign durant, sign rondo and noah?

    Or trade a lottery player for D.Rose or Cousins, and still add durant. After Hibbert and Clarkson RFA hold, and a top 3 draft pick hold, the team should have $40m or more.

  • The comparison is that their both guards. Clarkson runs the point and is more efficient doing it. Why can Clarkson run the point with no excuses. But with Russell it’s every excuse in the book.

  • Because we hope that Russell Wil be like Clarkson and average 15ppg and 5apg by the end of the year. <- In fact, he's creeping close to that based on his last few games.

  • It’s because his minutes are based on growith and his ability to contribute, not easily recognized metrics. When Russell’s one of the top 5 guys he’s earned his right to be on the court. Until then he’s a rookie who has to get better at EVERYTHING.

  • Why?
    It is up to Russell. Russell has to grow as a player and a person. He has to make advances, listen to the coaches and get better. That’s something only Russell can control.

  • Have no delusions whatsoever and like I said he is playing better continue to give him court time to learn.

  • Per what you said “We critics have always been prepared to give the kid time to grow” So give him time to grow before making judgements calling him a bust. Some people think they know everything and you have the nerve to call some of us delusional. Its called being fair! Get used to it.

  • I was backing you up. As I commented to Jefferson. Man you’re something else or you’re that dense and so sensitive.

  • All good. It’s all love for the Lakers and the young bucks. Here’s to tonight’s game.

  • Yup I agree , its hard thinking that we will loose to Golden State giving them history and a big part is saying if we win against them tonight wouldn’t that be something , strong statement from the Lakers.

  • Man , you totally missed my point a 2nd time, i’m not going to even respond to that. Read , understand then write your thoughts.

  • It’s one of those damned if you do damned if you don’t type game/season, I’d hate see the Lakers lose and sting a little bit to win in sake of the protected pick. Completely torn. But watching Russell, JC,Randle and the rest of the young core progress is a morale victory if those even exist lol.

  • I too disagree, his mentoring is too harsh, BS doesn’t have personal accountability, have you seen him coach? and like Daryl said Bull headed. And Please don’t say were being blind or delusional by the fact he is #2 pick and we Laker fans think he is the messiah. All rookies need to start somewhere and learn hence lets give him enough time to do that instead of putting him in a pen.

  • Very True, I agree but the more I think about it our pick isn’t guaranteed , yes we may be 3rd worst in the league and with luck might get it but that isn’t guaranteed. My 2cents is lets just develop our kids, coach and mentor them properly and let those ping pong balls fall where destiny leads it. And absolutely seeing the young core progress is surely a victory in this mediocre season.

  • His resume is terrible he hasn’t won 25 games in the last 5 years of coaching. He has had a much larger majority of losing seasons than winning one’s over 15 years of coaching

  • So you think its solely on Russell? Don’t you think having a good coach and coaching staff helps ? having these people mentor. Having our aged great help in developing these young players similar to when Kobe first started wearing that Laker uniform and was taught. It’s a 2 way street and personally I have seen Russell try, maybe not enough as we laker fans expect but he is trying. Now lets see Kobe , Coach and the rest of the coaching staff help him too.

  • Lakers game’s also on TNT lol, as long as the team plays assertively and isn’t afraid of the moment (aside of not losing by 20+ pts) then it’ll be all right. Hard to imagine the Lakers will pull off a win when they can’t even play as a TEAM on a nightly basis.

    p.s. LN’s set up page is strange, why show other articles (scrolling down) when you can’t even comment on them directly? Literally have to make 2-3 more clicks to link up to that article directly to be able to comment on it.

  • Maybe they are trying to get us to actually read their articles, instead of just scrolling down to the comment section, like I do most of the time.

  • You ask why and I explained it in depth after my first sentence. I don’t want to repeat myself in a “debate”.

  • There’s only so much they can do, at some point Russell has to show something we’re still waiting !!!!

  • This team and this season is lost because Scott cannot see past Kobe. Kobe is clearly done. This is so sad.

  • It’s called being fair! He has been improving, its only been close to 15 games.

  • again the team is better with kobe on the court. the issue is lou pg, bass center, kobe sf, hibbert only getting 26mpg, and playing clark and russ together

  • Who said anything about hyping the kid as the next superstar , people in here are just saying give him time to learn and grow contrary to what you think people believe. Lets just be fair and give the kid a chance.

  • This team eill not be right till both Kobe and Scott are gone. The focus needs to be on thr youth, period.

  • I’m all for fairness and yes fairness also includes time spent on SL, Training Camp and regular season after all ask those that were cut because they did not meet the criteria for getting a roster spot and Yes I have seen some improvement however this improvement Russell seems to think he’s a SG, not a PG, infact his assists have decreased instead of increasing but I will be fair so long as I can stand it but it has been very hard rooting for this 2nd pick !!!!

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