One of the major criticisms of the Lakers in recent years is that they have lacked young talent. When the team was in the middle of their championship run, it was full of veterans and for the most part, that is the way the team has remained.
While the team still has a number of veterans, the Lakers were able to add a couple of young players with potential. Because of that, ESPN’s Amin Elhassan has moved the Lakers from last to 23rd in the latest edition of the under-25 talent rankings:
The Lakers placed last in last year’s ranks, and their reward was mid-lottery pick Randle. While I don’t think he has the upside of some of his draft classmates, he still represents a ray of hope that did not previously exist. He’s a power forward who can go back to the basket or attack out of a face-up. Clarkson was a nice combo guard pickup in the second round but likely won’t see much playing time, while incumbents Henry and Kelly are just living the NBA dream as the player who gets time on bad teams and sits on good ones.
The additions of Randle and Clarkson definitely do give the Lkers a light at the end of the tunnel that the team has lacked in recent years. Not since the early years of Andrew Bynum have the Lakers had young players with this much potential.
The Lakers clearly aren’t in the class of the top teams on this list as the Pelicans (Anthony Davis, Jrue Holiday) and Wizards (John Wall, Bradley Beal) have certified stars under the age of 25, but the arrow is clearly pointing in the right direction.[divide]
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