Whether it is his play on the court or his attitude off of it, Los Angeles Lakers rookie D’Angelo Russell has faced his fair share of criticism in his first NBA season.
That criticism has come from everywhere as fans have wondered whether the Lakers made the right selection, and head coach Byron Scott hasn’t been shy about talking about where Russell is coming up short during games. Russell has even criticized his own play, showing that he is very hard on himself.
Playing in Los Angeles, Russell will be subjected to far more than the average player, and according to Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times, Russell takes the criticism seriously:
D'Angelo Russell says he takes criticism fairly seriously: "LeBron still gets criticism. Jesus still gets criticized."
— Mike Bresnahan (@Mike_Bresnahan) January 30, 2016
Obviously, Russell isn’t trying to compare himself to LeBron or Jesus, but he is right in that everyone gets criticized for something. Every NBA great, be it Jordan, Kobe, Kareem, Magic or anyone else has been criticized throughout their career for something. It comes with the territory.
The good thing for Russell is that he seems to be using this criticism as motivation to keep working hard and improving. The ability to criticize himself is also a good sign in that he is self-aware and knows he still has a long ways to go.
There have been questions about Russell’s attitude and whether or not he is too cocky right now, but it looks as if he is simply confident in his abilities and has high expectations of himself. He is not where he wants to be right now and is working hard to get there, and that is a good sign for him and the Lakers.