The Los Angeles Lakers are reportedly set on selecting former Duke star Jahlil Okafor with their No.2 overall pick at the NBA Draft 2015 on June 25.
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The Lakers received a big break when they landed the No.2 pick at the NBA Draft Lottery, and at a time when they need to rebuild and add a franchise cornerstone, they will be fully aware of the importance of getting this right.
D’Angelo Russell in particular has been mentioned as potentially moving up and ruining projected boards with the Lakers hosting him for a workout, while Emmanuel Mudiay also attended a workout which in turn sent the rumour mill into overdrive.
However, despite all the speculation linking them with other prospects, it still comes down to who is left after the Minnesota Timberwolves have chosen with the number one overall pick.
Many still believe that it will be former Kentucky star Karl-Anthony Towns who is Minnesota bound, which means that the Lakers will take Okafor.
“The Lakers are going through the motions with other draft prospects—D’Angelo Russell and Emmanuel Mudiay have been in for workouts—but multiple league sources say L.A. is locked in on Okafor. Despite being overtaken by Towns, scouts still see Okafor as a franchise center—one with an enormous upside,” Sports Illustrated report.
As with every team with a top pick in this Draft, it is only natural that the Lakers are looking at all of their options before making a final decision.
However, they should not spurn the chance to build their front court with a young and talented partnership between Julius Randle and either Towns or Okafor, and so expect them to look to make that pick.
Jordan Clarkson emerged as a real find last season and will likely play more minutes in the backcourt, while free agency will allow the Lakers to look at several options with Rajon Rondo never far away from a report linking him with a switch to the Staples Center next season.