Happy two month anniversary of the Lakers winning the 2020 NBA championship! To rejoice, the defending champs and the Clippers performed a preseason game on Friday evening. The Lakers received, 87-81, however that’s not likely what’s that vital, as a result of it’s only a meaningless preseason game that noticed each teams play largely camp invitations or players who most likely received’t determine into their regular rotations for almost all of the second half.
But simply because the game doesn’t actually matter doesn’t imply we will’t have just a little enjoyable on the Lakers’ little brothers’ expense, or that there weren’t a number of issues that stood out.
Here are a number of takeaways.
Montrezl Harrell doesn’t take nights off
With Anthony Davis, LeBron James, Marc Gasol, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Markieff Morris sitting out for precautionary causes as they ramp again up after a brief turnaround — however Paul George, Kawhi Leonard and many of the Clippers’ regular rotation taking part in, not less than within the first half — there have been loads of minutes and touches to go round for the Lakers, and if one simply watched Harrell, they wouldn’t have the ability to inform this was only a glorified scrimmage.
Harrell has a rep as a tireless hustle player, however he gave Lakers fans an actual first style on Friday evening. The reigning Sixth Man of the Year always attacked the offensive glass to create additional possessions, used the couple of nifty little flip shots in his bag to score on his personal and injected some power right into a game that was in any other case usually fairly lifeless.
Harrell completed with 19 points and 9 rebounds whereas shooting 5-13 from the sphere. Additionally, he gave us what might need been the second of the evening when a scorching mic beneath the rim picked up that he has no love misplaced for his former team:
Talen Horton-Tucker is growing earlier than our eyes
Horton-Tucker didn’t play an ideal basketball game on Friday evening. No one actually does within the preseason. He wasn’t even at all times good, ending with 19 points on 6-17 shooting. That mentioned, he continued to point out the intriguing flashes of expertise which have the Lakers so enthusiastic about his potential, and appeared like somebody who had been locked in a basement, ravenous for shots for the final 12 months he’s spent largely growing in anonymity:
Horton-Tucker nonetheless has to study a bit extra about angles to complete across the rim that correctly make the most of use his unbelievable wingspan, but it surely was actually enjoyable to observe him attempt stuff. And with how simply he was attending to the cup, it’s straightforward to see why he’s impressed to this point in camp.
Kyle Kuzma appears to be like snug
Like Horton-Tucker, Kuzma performed removed from an ideal game. But he did look snug out on the floor, and extra promisingly, like a player who is aware of this technique effectively. Inserted into the beginning lineup, he may usually be seen telling his new teammates the place to go within the team’s units, and was making passes to the appropriate locations (together with a number of lobs) even when they didn’t at all times end in buckets.
Kuzma goes to should play higher within the regular season if he’s going to have the breakout season many are hoping for, however he ended the evening with 18 points and 5 assists, and his bounce-back tour acquired off to an honest begin.