Considering their struggles from behind the arc this season, the Los Angeles Lakers could look to address shooting in the 2018 NBA Draft. A candidate who fits the mold is Florida guard Jalen Hudson, who was among six participants at a pre-draft workout this week.
After two years at Virginia Tech, Hudson spent this past season with the Gators. He knocked down 40.2 percent of his 3-pointers, and averaged 15.5 points and 3.9 rebounds per game.
While Hudson’s ability to shoot and score isn’t questioned, it’s also become somewhat of a stigma. “I feel like I can do a lot of things than just shoot,” Hudson said after going through a workout with the Lakers.
“But I feel like that’s probably one of the things I’m better at. I hope it will translate.”
Hudson led Florida in scoring and made a team-high 78 3-pointers this season.
He had a particularly memorable performance against Gonzaga, pouring in a career-high 35 points behind eight 3-pointers. “I think teams will definitely remember that a lot,” Hudson said of the big game.
“But I don’t even think that was one of my best games overall. I had a bunch of games where I did a lot of stuff on both ends of the floor and just affected the game in different ways.”
The 21-year-old did not hire an agent, which leaves him eligible to return to Florida for a senior season. But Hudson’s focus is on putting his best foot forward. “Just compete and give a lot of effort,” he said of the workout.
“For me it was trying to show a little bit of everything. I did make some tough shots but I want to show everybody I can do more. I’m known as just a shooter, and I feel like I can do a lot more.”
Included in that was playing well defensively. “I didn’t know they finished top-15 in the league but watching the games you could really tell their guys put a lot of effort and emphasis on defense.”