The Los Angeles Lakers have a very important off-season ahead of them and the first step in that summer will be the 2015 NBA Draft. Likely armed with two first-round picks, the Lakers have a chance to dramatically improve the talent level of the team.
In his latest mock draft on ESPN, Chad Ford has the Lakers taking one of the top point guards in the draft at fourth overall:
Landing Mudiay would be an especially strong get for the Lakers, who have a major need at point guard. While Mudiay’s season in China was cut short by an ankle injury, his combination of size, elite athleticism and raw power is reminiscent of a young Derrick Rose. He may take a little longer to adjust to the NBA after nearly a yearlong hiatus, but the combo of Mudiay and Julius Randle at least would give the Lakers a strong foundation to start to build around in the post-Kobe era.
With their second pick, Ford sees the Lakers taking a small forward who is a solid all-around player:
The Lakers’ second pick (courtesy of the Rockets as part of the trade that rid Houston of Jeremy Lin’s salary) won’t land them a superstar, but with major needs at every position, L.A. could add a valuable role player in Dekker. He is athletic, can defend multiple positions, is a solid shooter and rarely makes mistakes. Most importantly, he is tough and a winner — something the Lakers could definitely use more of.
If the Lakers remain fourth overall, the team would likely be very excited to land Mudiay who reportedly is second on the team’s draft board behind expected top pick, Duke center Jahlil Okafor. Some celebrities like The Game are already on the Mudiay bandwagon.
Dekker would also fit a need as a small forward who can play some defense and stretch the floor, something the Lakers sorely need right now. With so many holes on the roster, the draft will be the first step for the Lakers returning to relevancy in the NBA.[divide]
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