With just 10 games remaining in the Los Angeles Lakers’ season, it’s time to look toward the future.
If the season ended today – it will actually end on April 15 – then the Lakers would have 3 draft picks coming their way.
The NBA’s Draft Lottery will decide whether the Lakers keep their own first-round pick this year.
Going into tonight’s game against the Philadelphia 76ers, the Lakers have the fourth-worst record in the league – Philly is third – which would give them an 82 percent chance of holding onto their pick.
Coincidentally, the 76ers will receive the Lakers’ first-rounder if it falls out of the top-five as Philadelphia received the pick in a trade with Phoenix Suns last month.
So, assuming that the Lakers will keep their first-round pick, here’s the 3 players the purple and gold would draft if the season ended today, according to Draft Express.
Note: This is based on Draft Express’ mock draft which doesn’t take the needs of each team into consideration. So, the Lakers’ actual draft board will probably actually look different to this one.
4. D’Angelo Russell (Ohio State)
6’5″ guard, 19-years-old. Averaged 19.3 points, 5.7 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 1.6 assists in 33.9 minutes per game in his freshman season. Also shot over 41 percent from three-point range. Has been compared to Brandon Roy and Manu Ginobili by NBADraft.net. Shot just 3-for-19 in his last game of the NCAA Tournament against Arizona. Scored 28 on 10-for-20 shooting the previous game against VCU, however.
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28. George Lucas (International)
Via Houston’s first-round pick which was part of the Jeremy Lin trade. 6’5″ point guard, just 18-years-old. Has a 7’1″ wingspan and “absolutely gigantic hands,” per Draft Express. Has spent this season playing in his native Brazil, though averaged 13.4 points, 4.2 rebounds, 4.2 assists, 3.0 turnovers and 2.0 steals per game while playing for Brazil’s at the U18 FIBA Americas Championship last summer.
34. Timothe Luwawu (International)
6’7″ shooting guard, 19-years-old. Currently playing in his native France where he is averaging 7.4 points, 2.5 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game in 19 minutes per game. He isn’t a lock to enter the draft this year, however. According to Sportando, Luwawu will workout for NBA teams, though he will withdraw his name if it looks like he won’t get picked in this year’s draft.
56. Rakeem Christmas (Syracuse)
The Lakers will receive the Clippers’ second-round pick (via the Lin trade with Houston) if it falls outside 31-50 or 56-60. However, right now, it’s at 56, meaning the pick would be conveyed to the Nuggets. This could of course change before the end of the season.