This off-season will be one of the most crucial in Lakers history. With nearly the entire roster eligible for free agency and a likely lottery pick in one of the deepest drafts in NBA history, it is likely that we will see a lot of new faces on the Lakers next season.
This year’s NBA Draft is full of excellent prospects who could alter a franchise and one of those is Kansas center Joel Embiid. In a recent chat on ESPN.com, draft analyst Chad Ford spoke about the likelihood that the Lakers would take him if they were to receive the top pick in the draft:
I think the Jazz and Celtics have Jabari Parker rated ahead of him right now. The Magic and Sixers have Andrew Wiggins rated ahead of him. I think the Bucks, Kings, Cavs, Lakers would all go Embiid. I could see the Celtics, Sixers and Magic switching to Embiid by June. Think Jazz would stick with Parker.
With the team unlikely to retain Pau Gasol after the season, taking Embiid would make a lot of sense. He is an extremely raw prospect who has only been playing basketball for four years, but the skills he has already developed in that timeframe are amazing. In his last game against Iowa St., Embiid totaled 16 points, nine rebounds and five blocks while shooting seven of eight from the field.
There is a lot of work to be done before the draft takes place in June. We have no clue where the Lakers will be selecting in the draft and things can change. With guys like Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker and Marcus Smart, the Lakers could have a lot of options come draft day.
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