2. It might be time for the Los Angeles Lakers to start regretting the Talen Horton-Tucker contract
Look, this is going to upset a lot of Laker fans because of how young Talen Horton-Tucker is and the potential he has. This is by no means an attempt to try and declare THT as a failure and write his potential off for the future. He very well could turn into a legitimate rotation player and has the fundamental tools to do so.
That being said, the Lakers needed THT to come together this season. The team is not paying him over $10 million this season to figure things out. The Lakers are paying him over $10 million this season to be a contributor this season. Heck, THT is the best perimeter defensive player that the Lakers have on paper and that is huge for this team.
Horton-Tucker has been bad this season. He started off hot coming back from injury but it has really gone downhill since, including this game. THT played just 21 minutes despite the depth issues because he picked up five fouls. In those 21 minutes, THT scored two points with three rebounds and one assist. He shot 1/4 from the field, 0/2 from three.
THT was shooting 38.6% from the field and 23.4% from beyond the arc entering this game. That is simply not good enough. It does not matter how good you are defensively, you cannot be played in the playoffs if you are a complete zero on the offensive side of the basketball.
What makes it worse is that he has not even been that great defensive. THT has a -0.4 Defensive Box Plus/Minus this season, which puts him slightly below average.
The Los Angeles Lakers essentially chose to re-sign THT over re-signing Alex Caruso. THT needs to put it together to keep the Lakers from regretting that move. Sure, he has potential, but for all we know that potential might not even blossom fully until his current contract is over.