Lakers Video: Rui Hachimura & Jarred Vanderbilt Working Out With Phil Handy In Greece
Jarred Vanderbilt Rui Hachimura Lakers
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

One of the more intriguing matchups to watch once Los Angeles Lakers training camp kicks off will be for that third frontcourt spot next to LeBron James and Anthony Davis. At the end of the regular season, defensive ace Jarred Vanderbilt had locked down that spot. But during the playoffs, Rui Hachimura exploded, becoming one of the Lakers’ best players.

With Hachimura signing a new three-year contract with the Lakers this offseason, and his improved play ultimately leading to him taking that starting spot at the end of the Lakers’ playoff run, the belief is that he will be a starter for the Lakers next season. But regardless of who starts and who comes off the bench, both Vanderbilt and Hachimura are working hard this offseason.

And one of the best people to work with is Lakers assistant coach Phil Handy. The player development specialist has been going around the world this summer running basketball camps. At a recent camp in Greece, both Vanderbilt and Hachimura were there getting work in with the Lakers assistant, via PickUpHoop and Lakers Legacy & Legends:

It is great to see Hachimura and Vanderbilt working to improve their game. For Hachimura, his outside shooting took a massive leap in the postseason as he shot 55.7% overall and 48.7% from 3-point range. No one is expecting him to maintain that level of shooting from deep, but it is proof that he is a better shooter than what his career numbers indicate and the Lakers will be hoping for more of that next season.

For Vanderbilt, becoming more consistent from outside will be the key to him maintaining a big role in the rotation. He is one of the best perimeter defenders in the NBA who can guard nearly every position but has never shot higher than 32.2% from deep. Becoming just a respectable shooter, at least from the corners, will make him impossible to keep off the court. He can also benefit from becoming a better finisher insider due to his cutting and offensive rebounding ability.

Hachimura and Vanderbilt going around the world to work with Handy just shows how trusted he is in terms of bringing out the best in players and both forward stand to be big parts of the Lakers’ rotation this season.

Lakers’ Rui Hachimura credits Phil Handy for hot postseason shooting

For Hachimura, working with Handy was a given considering the trust he had already built with the Lakers assistant. In fact, Hachimura credited Handy for instilling the confidence in him going into the playoffs last season.

Hachimura spoke on his shooting struggles when he first joined the Lakers and said that it was Handy who told him those were the shots that he would be taking in the big playoff games. Handy also told the forward he needed to shoot in practice like it was a game.

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