Lakers News: Wayne Ellington Still Figuring Out His Role
(Photo by Adam Pantozzi/NBAE via Getty Images)

Wayne Ellington has been in the Los Angeles Lakers lineup for five of their 13 games after suffering a hamstring injury in the preseason. After just nine minutes in his first game, he has carved out a solid role, getting an average of 24.8 minutes per game over the last four.

In those five games, his shooting splits have been solid, but not fully what the team hoped for when he originally signed in L.A. He’s averaging 7.4 points 38.7% from the field and 39.3% from three, but is clearly still working on finding a rhythm within the offensive scheme as he works his way back from injury.

The Lakers are still experimenting as well, even throwing him in the starting lineup against the Minnesota Timberwolves in what wound up being a massive blowout loss. Ellington is not worried about any early bumps with his role, however.

“Still finding it. Still finding it,” Ellington said of his role. “It’s a process. The past few games I feel like I’ve been more aggressive, and guys have been looking for me more.

“Understanding that once I make a couple, it opens up the game a little bit for our attackers. For Russ, for AD, not for Bron, yet but for those guys to get downhill and get in the paint. It’s a process. We’re all learning each other. It takes time. It doesn’t happen overnight. We’re not that many games into the season where we just snap a finger and goes our way. I feel like it’s going to start coming for sure.”

Ellington spoke about the starting lineup from Friday featuring him, Russell Westbrook, Anthony Davis, Kent Bazemore and Avery Bradley. “There were some positives, there were some negatives obviously. The game didn’t go the way we wanted to, so there’s probably more negatives than positives.

“We’ll see tomorrow when we look at the film. It’s all new. We’re all getting adjusted. We’re all still learning each other. Obviously, you want to win games while you’re learning each other, but there’s no excuse. We’re all disappointed.”

The Lakers obviously cannot continue to lose these types of games against non-playoff opponents. Various Lakers players have made it known that Friday night’s results were unacceptable. However, everyone — including Ellington — is still trying to figure out their role with the team.

Being at full strength will obviously help, however that can’t be used as an excuse for the lack of effort displayed in some of these games.

For Ellington, his goal is simply to come into the game when called upon and make shots. If he does that, he’s playing his role to perfection.

LeBron James doing basketball activity

While there were fears that LeBron James could be out for a significant amount of time with his rectus abdominis strain, Frank Vogel revealed that he’s back to doing basketball activity and is truly day-to-day with regard to a return.

The Lakers desperately need some of their players to start returning to the lineup, and James is a strong place to start.

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