Although the Los Angeles Lakers’ front office was unable to lure any of its most sought-after free agents once again, they did manage to re-sign a major rebuilding block in guard Jordan Clarkson.
Despite questions as to how the Lakers would go about moving this team in the right direction, Clarkson made it clear that he wanted to be a part of it as both sides reached a four-year, $50 million deal almost as soon as free agency begun.
With the business side of things taken care of Clarkson recently discussed some of things he’s been working on this summer with Christopher Cason of HypeBeast.com
“Just being able to do more behind the three-point line. Also getting stronger in terms of finishing at the basket with contact. A big focus for me is expanding my game and being able to go off-the-dribble more. I know we’re going to be in a more up-tempo and free system. I’m just trying to prepare as much as I can for that.”
While Clarkson’s improvement from beyond-the-arc has been well-documented this offseason, its encouraging to see him working on other important aspects of his game as well.
Clarkson’s speed and athleticism make his off-the-dribble game potentially the most dangerous part of his game. His jumper is showing signs of improvement and that will open up things for him even more to go to the basket. If he can finish well at the rim there is no reason Clarkson can’t average 20 points per game this season.
Clarkson has also spoken about looking to improve his defense and he will definitely be relied on to be one of the primary defenders on this team.
Despite splitting ball-handling duties with rookie D’Angelo Russell last season, Clarkson saw steady improvement in his numbers including points per game (15.5), and three-point percentage (34%). Now with the departure of Kobe Bryant, this young squad will look to Clarkson to be their most consistent performer.