Player News - Lakers

Date: Team: Pos:

President Magic Johnson said Lonzo Ball is "the new face of the Lakers."

Magic also added he hopes Ball doesn't break all of his records. General manager Rob Pelinka said Ball has the ability to be an All-Defensive player because of his length, assuming Ball can commit to film study. While he does have a funky delivery on his jumper, his release is as quick as anyone to offset the long path in his delivery, so his shot could still work in the league. Vegas has him as the favorite for Rookie of the Year and it's for good reason.
Jun 23 - 7:43 PM

P.J. Dozier has agreed to a free-agent deal with the Los Angeles Lakers.

The South Carolina combo guard was projected to be a second-round pick during the draft, but he doesn't have a true position yet which may be a reason why he went undrafted. As a sophomore, Dozier led his team all the way to the Final Four, averaging 13.9 points, 4.8 boards, 2.8 assists, 1.7 steals and 1.2 triples. He measured in just under 6'7" during the combine with a 6'11" wingspan and 8'5" standing reach. Dozier does have solid potential and will have a chance to make the 15-man roster with the Lakers rebuilding.
Jun 23 - 9:58 AM

The Lakers selected Indiana center Thomas Bryant with the 42nd pick in the draft.

His 7’6" wingspan ranked third at the NBA Draft Combine, and that’s a big reason why the 6’10" center was even drafted. Although, Bryant did show he has a jumper, making 23-of-60 (38.3 percent) on treys and 36.7 percent on two-point jumpers last year. He was also able to block 1.5 shots per game at Indiana last year, adding averages of 12.6 points, 6.6 boards and 1.5 assists. He gives the Lakers some depth behind Brook Lopez and Ivica Zubac, but likely won't play much at the start of the season.
Jun 22 - 11:36 PM

With the 30th and final first-round pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, the Los Angeles Lakers have selected SG Josh Hart.

The Lakers acquired the 30th and 42nd picks from Utah in exchange for No. 28 overall. Villanova’s run to the title in 2016 headlines Hart’s career. While the senior didn’t get a title in 2017, he performed well regarding his stats with 18.7 points, 6.4 boards, 2.9 assists, 1.6 steals and 2.1 treys on an impressive 61.9 true shooting percentage to get him First Team All-American Honors. He is a little undersized as a shooting guard at 6’6" and 204 pounds, but don’t be surprised to see Hart push for minutes in a currently thin Lakers backcourt.
Jun 22 - 10:48 PM

The Los Angeles Lakers have selected Kyle Kuzma with the No. 27 overall selection in the 2017 NBA Draft.

The Lakers acquired this pick from Brooklyn in the D'Angelo Russell trade. The 6'10" Kuzma carried the Utes offense with his team-high 16.4 points on a 27.0 usage rate and 56.5 true shooting percentage as a junior. Kuzma's offensive game is well-rounded with shots from all over the court, but he did make just 36.0 percent on two-point jumpers and only 32.1 percent on treys for his 0.9 makes per outing. While he did pull down 9.0 boards per game, he also didn’t really much else with 0.6 steals, 0.5 blocks and 2.1 turnovers. He'll have a lot of work to do if he hopes to earn meaningful minutes in his rookie season in Los Angeles playing behind Julius Randle and Larry Nance.
Jun 22 - 10:32 PM

The Lakers have selected UCLA PG Lonzo Ball with the second overall pick.

LaVarstradamas had it all along. Lonzo’s skills as a basketball player tend to get overshadowed because of his dad, but Ball is one of the best prospects in the 2017 class. Despite an odd shooting stroke, Ball has a nice release point, helping him get to 41.2 percent on treys and 46.2 percent on his two-point jumpers in his freshman season at UCLA. He does get the Jason Kidd comparisons for his size at 6’6" while Ball himself has talked about how he wants to be a pass-first point guard, and he was also a plus rebounder at 6.0 per game last year. With the Lakers unloading D'Angelo Russell to Brooklyn, Ball should be the starting PG on opening night.
Jun 22 - 7:48 PM

The Knicks are interested in Josh Hart and may try to move up to take him later in the draft, according to Ian Begley of ESPN NY.

There were not many better NCAA players last year, but Hart being a four-year Villanova guy hurts his draft stock. The shooting guard is also a little undersized at 6'5", but there's some hope he can transition to more of a combo guard. He could be drafted towards the end of the first round or early in the second round.
Jun 22 - 12:46 PM

Nick Young's agent, Mark Bartelstein, said Young declined his player option because he "knows the Lakers are going in a direction."

"They were clear with that at the end of the season and the way things went," Bartelstein said. "He felt like this is an opportunity to choose his own destiny and pick the best spot where he can get a chance to contribute at a high level." In other words, Swaggy P is probably not going back to the Lakers. He also may be looking for a place where he can get some minutes. He probably won't be going to the Nets, though.
Jun 22 - 11:41 AM

Nick Young has declined his $5.6 million player option in favor of free agency.

Young is 32 years old and it's no surprise to see him chase more long-term money, rather than playing out his deal and testing the market at age 33. He had a minor bounce-back season last year, even showing commitment on the defensive end, but no matter where he lands he won't offer fantasy owners more than a handful of points and 3-pointers.
Jun 21 - 7:05 PM

The Lakers reportedly "engaged Sacramento in talks" to send their No. 2 pick to the Kings for the No. 5 and No. 10 picks, according to David Aldridge of NBA.com.

Per Aldridge, the Kings did say no to this deal, and the Lakers had the idea they would package one of those picks to get Paul George. If true, there are a couple things to consider here. First, this really shows how much the Lakers want to turn this team around in a hurry. Secondly, the Lakers may not be locked in on drafting Lonzo Ball at two, and again freeing up money for free agents is paramount for them. Expect another Lakers trade in the next 36 hours.
Jun 21 - 2:47 PM

Julius Randle has shed some serious weight this offseason as he looks to improve his conditioning.

Randle has been working with renowned trainer Amoila Cesar since the season ended, and he's already shed 13 pounds. Magic Johnson said that if any of his guys come into training camp next season with more than eight percent body fat, they won't see the floor next year, and Randle (who ended his 2016-17 campaign at 13.7 percent body fat) has clearly taken that message to heart. Cesar and Randle will work to improve his conditioning, explosiveness and lateral quickness this offseason.
Jun 21 - 1:58 PM

Lonzo Ball said that the Lakers haven't made any promises to take him No. 2 overall on draft day.

While Ball has not received a promise from Los Angeles, the Lakers decision to trade away D'Angelo Russell on Tuesday was a pretty good indication that they're leaning towards taking a point guard with that No. 2 pick. They could go with De'Aaron Fox at the No. 2 spot, but most mocks project the Lakers to take Ball. If Ball does land in Los Angeles, he'd likely start right away, and he'll be someone to consider taking with a late mid-round pick on draft day.
Jun 21 - 1:12 PM

Brook Lopez has reportedly been traded to the Lakers in exchange for D'Angelo Russell and Timofey Mozgov.

Wow. This is the first major deal orchestrated by Lakers' new GM Rob Pelinka, and it's a move that will help open cap space in 2018 to try and bring on another star player. If the Lakers aren't able to swing a deal for Paul George this summer, Lopez will be the clear-cut No. 1 option on offense there, and his value should improve somewhat as he won't be playing for a team that is constantly resting their guys. Ivica Zubac will be confined to limited minutes behind Lopez, so his value takes a hit with BroLo's arrival, and LA sending away Russell could hint that they are leaning towards taking Lonzo Ball No. 2 overall.

Josh Hart worked out for the Suns on Monday.

This was Hart's second workout with the club, which hints that Phoenix may be considering investing a second-round pick in the two-guard out of Villanova. At 6'5 with a built 204-pound frame, Hart has good size for the shooting guard position, but it would be tough for him to crack the rotation in Phoenix given the glutton of guards already on the roster.
Jun 19 - 6:23 PM

According to Shams Charania of The Vertical, the Lakers front office and Lonzo Ball's agent "remain in discussions."

While it still seems likely that the Lakers will use the No. 2 pick on Ball, no guarantees have been made to his agent yet. Ball has met with the Lakers twice, but his camp must be somewhat confident about a future in Los Angeles because he's yet to meet with any other teams. The Lakers have been gauging the value of the No. 2 pick on the trade market and may even use it to pry Paul George away from Indiana, especially if Cleveland emerges as a threat to acquire the superstar forward.
Jun 19 - 10:19 AM


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