Once the Los Angeles Lakers moved up to the second overall pick in next month’s NBA Draft, nearly everyone assumed that the team would be adding either Kentucky’s Karl-Anthony Towns or Duke’s Jahlil Okafor to fill their hole at center. Of course, there are two guards who will surely be considered by the Lakers as well.
Ohio State’s D’Angelo Russell and China’s Emmanuel Mudiay are the other top prospects in this draft. According to Bleacher Report’s Kevin Ding, Mudiay would be the choice if the Lakers wanted to go with a guard:
No question Mudiay is the guy. If you wanna line up somebody up next to Kobe you don’t want duplication of what Kobe does […] if you’re gonna line somebody up next to Kobe for a year you would want somebody who’s more of a pure, steadier point guard.
Ding also mentioned that some in the Lakers organization believe that Kobe could benefit from a traditional point guard:
There is some belief in the Lakers organization that Kobe could benefit from having a more traditional point guard to set him up for shots to make his life easier. So while obviously there will be tons for Mudiay to learn in his first year in the NBA, in that sense, his skill-set matches up better as a guy who can line up next to Kobe and make Kobe’s life easier for at least one year.
Making life easier for Kobe is definitely something the Lakers will look into as he heads into what is expected to be his final season in the NBA.
The odds still lean towards the Lakers taking whichever big man the Timberwolves don’t pick, but the team will workout everyone and things could change.[divide]
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