The emergence of Talen Horton-Tucker was a main storyline of the preseason for the Los Angeles Lakers.
And while there was some uncertainty surrounding the role he will settle in over the duration of the 2020-21 regular season, he’s done nicely for himself thus far. In 15.4 minutes per game, he’s averaging 6.4 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.3 assists.
Moving forward, it’s unlikely the 20-year old NBA sophomore can carve out more than 12-15 minutes a game given the depth of the Lakers roster. They currently have an 11-man rotation when fully healthy, and that’s something that will only shrink as games get more important.
However, around the league, people are captivated by Horton-Tucker’s potential. One anonymous scout went so far as to say he could be a 20 point per game scorer on a non-playoff team, according to Bill Oram of The Athletic:
“I was on the phone with a scout the other day, kind of at the peak of THT hysteria, and this is not somebody who works for the Los Angeles Lakers, and said that, ‘If you put Talen Horton-Tucker on one of these s—– teams, like theThunder or Charlotte, that he might average 20 points a game. … This is somebody who does make money to watch. An NBA team pays for this person’s opinions. That’s how high people view [Horton-Tucker] right now.”
While there’s no way to prove if this is true or not, it does show that Horton-Tucker is highly prized around the league. The young guard is another testament to the Lakers’ scouting department that can consistently find gems in the latter part of the NBA Draft.
Having a 20-year-old make legitimate contributions in his second season is something that most rebuilding teams don’t have the luxury of, let alone championship contenders.
Scout predicts Horton-Tucker for most improved player
At the peak of Horton-Tucker’s preseason outburst, another anonymous scout rattled off his own bold take about the 46th overall pick, saying he could win Most Improved Player.
While he may not get the necessary minutes and opportunities needed to contend for such an award, it’s clear Horton-Tucker’s talent and potential is lost on no one.
Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!