The Los Angeles Lakers are currently in the process of working out all the top prospects ahead of the 2017 NBA Draft to figure out who they’re going to take with the No. 2 pick.
Last week they worked out UCLA’s Lonzo Ball at the Lakers practice facility in El Segundo, while over the weekend they worked out Dennis Smith Jr. out of NC State. Tuesday they held another workout for a premiere point guard in Kentucky’s De’Aaron Fox, who many believe could challenge Ball for that No. 2 selection.
The Lakers brass also attended a workout in Sacramento last week for Kansas small forward Josh Jackson, who many view as the best defender in the draft.
According to Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders, Jackson impressed the Lakers in that workout:
There has been talk in NBA circles that Josh Jackson did very well in his workout with the Lakers in Sacramento, so much so that there are reports coming out of Phoenix suggesting Jackson may have a promise. Jackson recently canceled a planned visit with the Celtics, leading to more speculation he may have a commitment he is comfortable with.
Jackson is also set to workout for the Lakers again in El Segundo on Tuesday afternoon, which bodes well for him if he wants to wear the purple and gold.
In one season at Kansas Jackson averaged 16.3 points, 7.4 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.7 steals while shooting 51.3 percent from the field and 37.8 percent from three-point range.
Perhaps the biggest knock on Jackson is his shooting ability, but all his other skills are off the charts so it may be worth the risk for the Lakers to draft him and hope he can develop a consistent jump shot.
With the defensive struggles that the Lakers have gone through in recent years, adding a defender who can guard 1-4 at an elite level like Jackson can turn around the historic franchise.