Will exceed expectations: Talen Horton-Tucker
I always tease the NBA fans that overhype second-round picks knowing that they won’t ever be legitimate rotation players in the NBA. Every fan convinces themselves that some second-rounder out of Gonzaga is going to turn into something special only for that second-rounder to never get out of the G League.
Of course, there are counter-examples, such as Draymond Green, but they are few and far between.
Ironically, this is what I am doing with Talen Horton-Tucker after his rookie season. I think the Los Angeles Lakers have something special with THT and I think we will start to see that this season.
He probably will not get that much playing time still but in this unique season the Lakers are going to need depth anywhere they can get it. Based on how the roster is configured, I can legitimately see THT getting around 10 minutes a game in the regular season.
And if he plays as he did in the small flashes that we saw in the bubble then I am very excited. THT is someone who could be a legitimate plus defender with his length and speed as well as someone who could bang bodies down low and get to the rim.
THT needed a year to get used to the NBA regime and he is still only 20 years old, so there is plenty of time to grow. However, I think we really start to see the first signs of that promising potential this season.
If there is any team that is going to make THT something it is the Los Angeles Lakers, as they have had so many late first-round and second-round picks turn into rotation players. Jordan Clarkson, Larry Nance Jr, Josh Hart, Kyle Kuzma, Thomas Bryant, Mo Wagner, Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk and Ivica Zubac are all recent examples.