Lakers News: Ivica Zubac May Bring Back Skyhook Next Season
Lakers Nation Breakdown: Why It’s Time To Be Excited About Ivica Zubac
Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times

As the NBA regular season dwindles down, the young core of the Los Angeles Lakers have a chance to reflect upon the impactful rookie season. For rookies Brandon Ingram and Ivica Zubac, the first season is more so about acclimating yourself to the demands of a NBA season, while constantly trying to improve physically and evolve their overall game.

With 11 games remaining in the season, these recent stretch of games has been an audition of sorts for head coach Luke Walton, president of basketball operations Magic Johnson, and general manager Rob Pelinka. Walton has experimented with different lineups of late, while also starting his young core against veteran NBA lineups.

Zubac decided to participate in the Lakers newest installment of Lakers Voices chat, where a Lakers player and basketball insider Mike Trudell go back and forth in a conversation, while also taking questions from inquiring fans.

The 20-year-old has flourished from the teachings of the many legends and coaches of the franchise, including his own rendition of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s skyhook shot. During the interview, Zubac stated that next season may see a consistent dose of the patented post move:

With his size, length, and touch around the basket, Zubac could very well be the person to bring back the famed skyhook which helped Kareem Abdul-Jabbar become the NBA’s all-time leading scorer.

Flashes of Zubac’s game have Lakers fans optimistic at his future, as an offensive-minded, but defensively aware young center. Often times, Zubac has received comparisons to a young Marc Gasol. While any player would gladly accept that comparison, the Lakers center looks at it as an opportunity to learn from:

His production and minutes have consistently increased throughout the season, after starting the season in a developmental stage with the D-League. March has turned into Zubac’s best month of his early career, averaging 13.0 points, 5.5 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.4 blocks per game.

The 20-year-old also has shown maturity beyond his age, taking blame for losses this season, while also calling out his teammates to respond after an embarrassing performance earlier this season.

In 34 games played this season (seven starts), Zubac is averaging 7.5 points, 4.3 rebounds and 0.9 blocks, while shooting 54 percent from the field in 15.9 minutes per game.

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