Johnathan Williams plays defense against the Philadelphia 76ers at the Las Vegas Summer League on July 7, 2018.
(Ty Nowell/Los Angeles Lakers)

Latest Laker: Johnathan Williams

by Joey Ramirez
Digital Reporter

A starter for the entirety of the Lakers’ run to the Las Vegas Summer League championship game, Johnathan Williams has earned himself a spot at the team’s training camp.

The 6-foot-9, 230-pound power forward stood out on defense, where he was key to the Lakers constantly stifling the opponent’s offense.

A quick-footed big man, Williams thrived in the Lakers’ switch-heavy scheme, as he was able to consistently stay in front of guards and wings.

Williams’ prowess on this side of the floor was expected based on his record at Gonzaga. In both of his seasons with the Bulldogs, he led the WCC in defensive rating while earning first team all-conference honors.

The 23-year-old had more of an offensive green light in college, averaging 13.4 points and 8.5 rebounds while shooting 56.3 percent from the field.

On a Lakers summer squad with plenty of scoring options, he put up 4.5 points, 5.6 rebounds and a 36.4 percent clip.

Although his percentage was lower than he’d have liked, Williams did flash his scoring skill set.

The Memphis native may not provide much shooting range, but he is able to attack from outside with surprising ball handling that caught a few summer opponents off guard.

He was even better as a finisher at the rim, both out of pick-and-roll and in transition, where he was able to glide down the lane for dunks and layups.

Williams joins a training camp roster that includes fellow power forwards LeBron James, Kyle Kuzma and Moritz Wagner, as well as centers JaVale McGee and Ivica Zubac.

The Lakers have one two-way contract available for the upcoming season.

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