3 Ways D'Angelo Russell helps Dalton Knecht after accepting Lakers player option

The Los Angeles Lakers have drafted swingman Dalton Knecht. D'Angelo Russell could be one of the players who helps Knecht tap into his potential.
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2. Rookies Need Playmakers Alongside Them

The Los Angeles Lakers have two of the more dynamic playmakers in the NBA in superstar LeBron James and quality wing Austin Reaves. JJ Redick intends to run an offense that focuses on the depth in the playmaking department, however, and Dalton Knecht needs time to develop in that regard.

As the Lakers look to ease Knecht into a progressively larger role in the NBA, surrounding him with players who can create open looks for him will be essential—and D'Angelo Russell fits the bill.

Russell averaged 6.3 assists to just 2.1 turnovers per game during the 2023-24 regular season. He was second on the Lakers in assists, trailing only James, and had the best assist-to-turnover ratio on the roster with the standard set at the low bar of appearing in more than 17 games.

With Russell on the court, Knecht would have a player who he can work off of—a promising sign considering he shot well over 40 percent on catch-and-shoot 3s in 2023-24.

Knecht will ideally develop into a player who can create his own offense, and opportunities will likely be available to do so in 2023-24. A lack of depth at point guard could also result in Knecht playing significant minutes alongside Russell—or whoever else is penciled in as the primary player at the position.

If it turns out to be Russell, then Knecht would benefit significantly from having a sharpshooter next to him who can absorb pressure and find the open man.