Lakers 2024 NBA Mock Draft: Los Angeles looks to rediscover magic of 2020

The Los Angeles Lakers are looking to win a second championship in six seasons. Could the NBA Draft unlock that ambition by restoring the 2020 vision?
2020 NBA Finals - Game Six
2020 NBA Finals - Game Six / Mike Ehrmann/GettyImages
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Honorable Mention: Reece Beekman, Virginia Cavaliers

Ambitious Upside Comparison: T.J. McConnell

Realistic Upside Comparison: Jevon Carter

If the Los Angeles Lakers are interested in improving on defense, then Reece Beekman would be an ideal target at No. 55 overall. One of the most impressive athletes in this draft class, Beekman is a Virginia Cavaliers product who thrives as a traditional point guard.

Beekman's age—he turns 23 in October—and inconsistency from beyond the arc could result in him going undrafted, but he's a sleeper pick with the potential to make a significant impact in the NBA.

Beekman measured at 6'1.25" at the 2024 NBA Draft Combine, but he boasts a 6'6.5" wingspan and a strong 196-pound frame. In addition to having elite length for the point guard position, his end-to-end speed makes him a threat in transition.

Beekman ran the three-quarter sprint in 2.94 seconds, which ranked second at the Combine, and also posted the 12th-best mark in the lane agility drill.

On the court, Beekman is a two-way force, as evidenced by his averages of 14.3 points, 6.2 assists, 3.6 rebounds, and 2.0 steals per game. A four-year starter who won back-to-back ACC Defensive Player of the Year awards, Beekman is as proven as any defender in this class.

Beekman shot just 31.0 percent from beyond the arc this past season, but it's worth noting that he knocked down 35.1 percent of his attempts in 2022-23 and is a career 76.7 percent shooter from the free throw line.

The right coach could help Beekman find his NBA niche as a two-way point guard who can torment opposing scorers, facilitate the offense, and potentially even space the floor.