The Lakers came in to the summer league “season” with a fairly talented team, loaded with wing shooters and playmakers. While those players shone out, a late rally was too little too late for the Lakers, who dropped the game 70-62 . The Lakers were not without their big performances, though, as we break it down.
Best Player – (tie)Marcus Landry, Michael Snaer – While Chris Douglas-Roberts was deemed the favorite or most likely to make the roster as a wingman from this team, it was Snaer and Landry who shined brightest. For Landry, his 14 points came on 3 threes and 5 of 7 from the line. He broke out in the 3rd quarter with 10 points, but scored none in the 4th. Snaer, on the other hand, helped keep the Lakers alive late, finishing with 12 points, 6 rebounds, and 2 assists on 4 of 9 shooting and 3 of 3 from the line. While neither blew anyone away, both showed flashes of what could get them a spot on the Lakers this fall.
Biggest Surprise – Elias Harris - The big man wasn’t looked upon as someone with a huge shot at making the team, but his energy both offensively and defensively was impossible not to notice. Though he finished with just 9 points, he got to the rim a lot before missing a couple of easy shots. He also chipped in 8 rebounds, 1 assist, and 1 steal. If Harris can focus on reining in his energy and finishing better at the rim, he’ll get a serious look from the coaching staff.
Biggest Disappointment – Chris Douglas-Roberts - Billed by most as the best player on the team and most likely to see himself on the Lakers in October, CDR was woefully underwhelming. In his defense, he injured his ankle in the 2nd quarter and was in and out of the locker room throughout the game. However, even up to his injury, he seemed disinterested and more content with jacking up threes than attacking the rim. When he did get to the basket, his athletic finishes were what you’d expect from an athletic player like CDR. Hopefully the ankle injury doesn’t affect his play for the rest of the games.
Overall Takeaway – Great team play – Most of the time I watch the Lakers, it’s a team who’s dependent on Bryant to bail them out while they ball watch. This was a nice refresher as you saw players cutting, players actively looking to make the extra pass, and players attacking the rim. Defensively, there was great energy closing out on shooters and rotating to the open player. For the large part of the game, the Lakers defense kept them in the game, which is something rarely said about a Lakers team.
The Lakers next play Sunday against the Blazers at 6:30 Eastern.