At the 2018 NBA Draft, the Los Angeles Lakers selected Moritz Wagner with their No. 25 pick. As Los Angeles was one of the worst three-point shooting teams during the 2017-18 NBA season, Wagner was one of the best at his position, shooting 39.4 percent from that distance during his third season at Michigan.
With the Lakers first participating at the California Classic prior to the Las Vegas Summer League, Wagner has played fairly well. Through two games against Marvin Bagley III of the Sacramento Kings and Bam Adebayo of the Miami Heat, the 21-year-old is averaging 15.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 1.0 blocks in 23.1 minutes.
After losing the first two games, Wagner shared how he was adjusting to playing against NBA-caliber talent, according to Lakers:
“I think defensively I’m making strides. Just getting adjusted to the terminology, principles, and athleticism. Pretty satisfied with the development. Would be nice if we got a couple wins.”
As Wagner is still adjusting to the NBA’s three-point line and will need to improve his strength, he has already shown flashes of what he can become. Along with the ability to make perimeter shots, his first step is solid when opposing players try to keep him off the three-point line.
Depending on how the Lakers fill out the remainder of the roster, Wagner may have an opportunity to be a part of head coach Luke Walton’s rotation. If he is eventually able to be a consistent three-point shooter, it will open up lanes for LeBron James and the young core.
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