The Los Angeles Lakers have wrapped up their fourth consecutive season missing the playoffs but had several bright spots on the roster in the form of young promising talent.
“He’s a very very promising player and had incredibly strong minutes for us, especially in the second half of the year. Really, he is someone we consider to be one of the pillars for the future,” Pelinka said. “But I think when you’re talking about a 19 or 20-year-old in the league, there’s always that kind of balancing act of not overexposing a player and doing too much that you have negative returns on it. With young players, that’s what we’ll have always have to be mindful of.”
In his first NBA campaign, Zubac found much success in the final few months of the season with more playing time on the floor after the Lakers decided to shut down Timofey Mozgov in early March averaging 7.5 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 0.9 blocks in 38 games played. He recorded four double-doubles while scoring 10 or more points 14 times. Following the All-Star break, Zubac averaged 10.0 points on 55.3 percent shooting from the field with 4.5 rebounds and 1.1 blocks.
Zubac also became the youngest player in franchise history to record a 25-point double-double, and third youngest in team history (19 years, 305 days) to notch a double-double behind just Andrew Bynum and D’Angelo Russell.
The 20-year-old has given much reason for optimism moving f0rward because of his ability to impact the game on both ends of the floor as a rim protector defensively and offensively through pick-and-roll and on the low block while his back was to the basket.
With the front office possessing a level of high expectations for Zubac’s future, it could pave the way for him to fulfill his potential.