As the losses continue to pile up for the Los Angeles Lakers, the focus of many turns to the 2017 NBA Draft, which is believed to be one of the most stacked in recent memory. As was the case last year, the Lakers retain their first round pick only if it lands in the top-3.
Saturday saw a major matchup in college basketball as the No.2 Kansas Jayhawks took on the No.4 Kentucky Wildcats. The game featured three top-10 prospects in Kentucky guards De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk as well as Kansas forward Josh Jackson. Additionally, Kentucky big man Bam Adebayo is a top-20 prospect and others such as Isaiah Briscoe and Devonte’ Graham are viewed as second-round prospects at this time.
As is to be expected, there were a ton of scouts in attendance with Mike McCurry of Zags Blog reporting that there were 38 NBA personnel members in Lexington for the game:
38 NBA personnel will be at Rupp Arena later today for Kansas-Kentucky (6:15, ESPN) with focus on the backcourt.https://t.co/kNktEkvkcL
— Mike McCurry (@Mike_McCurry16) January 28, 2017
Nonetheless, the Lakers getting a close look at Jackson, Monk, and Fox should come as no surprise as the team is doing their due diligence on the best this year’s draft has to offer and those three players will certainly hear their names called early on draft night.
Fox is a speedy point guard who can change the game with his motor and relentlessness and excels at setting up teammates. Monk is a pure scorer with an impressive repertoire of offensive moves at his disposal. Jackson is an extremely versatile forward who excels as a playmaker in a point-forward role.
Ultimately Kansas came out victorious with Jackson compiling a double-double, but just as important for the future of all of these prospects was that they were able to show the Lakers, and every other team in attendance what they’re capable of.