NBA Draft Set For Thursday
On Thursday, the Lakers have the chance to add some young talent to their roster, as they hold the No. 22 pick in the 2021 NBA Draft.
They possess pick No. 22 due to tiebreaker procedures that were settled in May, when a random drawing between the teams that finished 42-30, including Portland and Dallas, saw the Mavs get No. 21, LAL No. 22 and the Blazers No. 23. Meanwhile, L.A.’s second round pick is owned by Detroit due to a previous trade.
It’s always a possibility that the Lakers could opt to move the 22nd pick in a trade, which is the case for every team, every year, but L.A.’s front office has had a lot of success drafting late in the first and into the second round over the past several years.
Below are the Lakers non-lottery draft selections (or players acquired in draft-day trades) from 2014 onward, with their current teams in parenthesis. Note: the Lakers did not make a selection in either 2019 or 2020:
25: Moritz Wagner (ORL)
39: Isaac Bonga (WAS)
47: Svi Mykhailiuk (OKC)
27: Kyle Kuzma (LAL)
30: Josh Hart (NOP)
42: Thomas Bryant (WAS)
32: Ivica Zubac (LAC)
27: Larry Nance, Jr. (CLE)
34: Anthony Brown
46: Jordan Clarkson
It’s typically uncommon for second round picks, not to mention many late first rounders, to last several years in the NBA, but nine of the 10 Lakers selections since 2015 remain in the league (Brown).
This season’s No. 22 position will be the highest non-lottery pick the Lakers possess since 2007 (No. 19). Lakers Assistant GM and Director of Scouting Jesse Buss and his staff, underneath VP of Basketball Ops Rob Pelinka, have had clear success finding talent later in the Draft. We’ll see what they have up their collective sleeve on Thursday evening.
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