After desperately trying to find ways to move into the first round of the 2011 draft the Lakers were stuck with the four second rounders they began with. Generally, second round picks are either bodies for camp or future projects. However the first two picks the Lakers made are expected to compete for roster spots.
Mitch Kupchak and company kept it local by drafting a couple guys with SoCal connections but also spanned the globe for some unknown talent. Here is a breakdown of the four selections made last night in New Jersey.
Darius Morris, G, Michigan (Round 2, Pick 41) – An L.A. native, Morris left Michigan after his sophomore year despite most projecting him as a second round pick at best. He’s got good size for a point guard (6’5”) and was viewed by some as the best passer in the draft. He’s not the elite level athlete the Lakers desperately need in the backcourt but he’s steady and has a good shot at making the roster should Shannon Brown decide not to return next season.
Andrew Goudelock, G, College of Charleston (Round 2, Pick 46) – Clearly the Lakers were looking for help in the backcourt as Goudelock makes it two guards with their first two picks of the draft. He’s a pure scorer with a sweet shooting stroke. Goudelock dropped 23 a night as a senior en route to becoming Charleston’s all-time leading scorer. His true position is as a shooting guard though he’s got combo guard skills. Too small to play the 2 in the NBA (6’2”) his biggest challenge will be learning to play the 1 though his shot will give him a legit chance to make the roster.
Chukwudiebere Maduabum, F, Bakersfield Jam (Round 2, Pick 56) – The pick that brought ESPN’s draft coverage to a screeching halt. He’s a native of Nigeria and played just 3 games for the Jam of the D-League. Jeff Van Gundy actually threw his hands up on live TV and said, “What do you want me to say? I have no idea who this guy is.” The Lakers later shipped Maduabum to the Nuggets for a future second round pick.
Ater Majok, C, Australia (Round 2, Pick 58) – Ok, follow the bouncing ball on this one. Majok is a native of Sudan who played one year at UCONN after sitting out a season due to eligibility issues before going to play professionally in Turkey and Australia. He’s tall (6’10”) but slender (208 lbs.). Majok’s chances of making the roster are consistent with his body type – long and slim. Kupchak believes Majok will remain overseas instead of trying to make the roster this year.