Topic: We wonder which player should the Los Angeles Lakers take if they fell one spot to fifth overall in the 2015 NBA Draft?
Context: As the draft nears, four prospects have more or less separated themselves from the rest of the pack. Jahlil Okafor, Karl-Anthony Towns, D’Angelo Russell and Emmanuel Mudiay have been, in some order, the top four prospects for a long time.
While the Lakers currently have the fourth-worst record overall, the draft lottery is unpredictable and a team behind them could very easily jump ahead. Should the Lakers end up with the fifth selection and those four players are presumably gone, it is anybody’s guess as to who the next choice would be as there is a logjam of players who could be considered.
As far as big men go, Willie Cauley-Stein is one of the best defenders in all of college basketball, Myles Turner has an intriguing mix of skills, and Kristaps Porzingis has impressed many scouts overseas. If the Lakers wanted to go for a wing player, Justise Winslow, Stanley Johnson and Mario Hezonja all bring something different to the table and combo forward Kevon Looney might have the highest ceiling of anybody.
The Lakers have needs across the board and will likely wind up taking who they believe to be the best player available, but who that person will be is anybody’s guess.
Verdict: We went to Twitter to ask the Lakers Nation faithful who they believe the Lakers should take if they wind up with the fifth overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft. These are some of the responses:
— Miguel Peña (@MiggySmalls24) March 28, 2015
— wesley udell (@wesudell) March 28, 2015
@TheeCoreyH justice winslow for sure
— cole boyer (@cbboyer) March 28, 2015
— Lakers 19-52… (@Lakers_Hoops) March 28, 2015
— ThisISTexas\m/ (@BigHec01) March 28, 2015
— David Tran (@davideeeezy) March 28, 2015
There was surely no consensus on who the pick should be, but three players were definitely coming up repeatedly and those were Willie Cauley-Stein, Justise Winslow, and Stanley Johnson.
If I had to choose between the three, I would personally take Winslow. He has impressed me all year with his ability to affect the game in so many different ways. His offense has picked up recently, but his defense, energy, and intangibles are absolutely outstanding.
The Lakers have a gaping hole at small forward and Winslow could come in immediately and provide a lockdown defender and all-around energy guy for the Lakers, something the team has lacked for a while now.
Cauley-Stein is very tempting as his defense is outstanding and the Lakers sorely need a rim protector, and Johnson probably has a higher ceiling than both, but Winslow does all of the little things and that has won me over. I would be ecstatic to see Winslow in purple and gold if the Lakers fell to five.
Lakers Practice Footage: Byron Scott Hands On With Jordan Clarkson