Worst Lakers starting small forward of the LeBron James era: Talen Horton-Tucker
Talen Horton-Tucker probably should be considered a two-guard for the sake of this exercise but it is all semantics. He is undoubtedly one of the worst starters that the Lakers threw out there since LeBron joined the team and it would be impossible to not include him on this list.
Despite showing a lot of potential in the Summer League and preseason, THT could never quite turn into a productive rotation player for Los Angeles. As soon as the games started to actually mean something THT would show that he was simply too green to be an NBA starter.
For the most part, THT did come off the bench for the purple and gold but he did start 23 career games for the team with 19 of those games coming in the 2021-22 season. That is the year in which LA increased THT’s workload (jumping up to 25.2 minutes per game) and it was an ugly watch on most nights.
Horton-Tucker simply was bad on both ends of the floor. His inefficient scoring negated any of his promising playmaking and he was still below average on the defensive side of the ball. THT ranked just five spots ahead of Bradley in BPM during the 2021-22 season, ranking 257th out of 272 players.
What makes this even more painful for fans is the fact that the team let Alex Caruso sign with the Chicago Bulls because of THT. Even though Los Angeles could have had both, the team had to choose between Caruso and THT for luxury tax reasons and obviously made the wrong choice.