The perks of being a Los Angeles Lakers’ fan:
Unfortunately, the downside with this is the lack of fanfare when it’s time for the NBA draft. To put it frankly, the entire 2012-13 season was a year to forget for Laker fans and newcomers. It was a year of lofty expectations and big names.
In was new center Dwight Howard, shiny point guard Steve Nash, and a bunch of shooters and role players. The best or worst part was the fact that for a period of time, the team’s “Mr. Irrevelant,” Robert Sacre was the best player on the court. But, it was hard not to salivate with a team of Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Steve Nash, and Dwight Howard with any talking head as head coach. Who can mess this up?
Well, it was messed up. And the Lakers also do not have a first rounder or a lottery pick to fall back on unless a miracle trade comes up. It won’t.
The Lakers’ pick is the 48th overall. That’s one pick, not in the first round, to access some of the dire holes in the Lakers’ juggernaut system. The biggest weakness must be backup point guard. If you remember any Steve Blake moments, it’s time to forget them. Nash proved last season’s constant injuries were a concern and the best way to remedy that is to at least have a basketball point guard behind him on the depth chart. The idea choice would be Detroit’s Ray McCallum. McCallum is a good decision-maker and shot selector. Not overly flashy and has no real superstar ceiling — a perfect backup point guard.
Or, the choice may be the NCAA champion Louisville’s Peyton Siva. He possesses great speed, athleticism, leadership, and a history of winning and experience. The downside, and this is the why he’s in the 45+ pick territory, is his low shooting percentages, small stature, and absent decision-making.
Some mock drafts have the Lakers selecting USC’s Dewayne Dedmon in anticipation that Howard may just jump ship. The biggest weakness, however, is small forward. The two forwards that have a shot of ending up in the gold and purple are Syracuse’ James Southerland and Tennessee State’s Robert Covington.
Whatever choice the Lakers end up, there are some serious holes. If Howard does leave, power forward becomes a need. If he doesn’t, small forward or point guard should be a priority. If Nash continues to show his age, the Lakers may need to trade up to get a lottery point guard or wait for the big draft in 2014.
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