The team has hit on other second-round picks including Luke Walton and Ronny Turiaf, who were instrumental to several championship teams. Over the course of the next week, we will profile seven players that the Lakers have worked out or that several mock drafts have them picking.
In the first of the series of seven potential second-round picks, we will highlight Ohio State forward Deshaun Thomas who led the Buckeyes to an Elite 8 appearance this past season.
Why He Fits:
Thomas is a volume scorer who averaged 19.8 points last season in his final season at Columbus. Listed at 6-7, Thomas would fit well into head coach Mike D’Antoni’s system as he has the ability to stretch the floor but can be aggressive in the paint.
The Lakers’ bench was one of the worst in the NBA last season, and Thomas would give the team depth at small forward and another shooter from the perimeter. Thomas shot 34 percent from the three-point line and would definitely see the floor if he’s available at pick number 48.
What People Are Saying:
If Thomas stayed in school another year, it’s possible that he would’ve played his way into the first round. However, he decided to come out after a successful NCAA Tournament run.
ESPN Insider Chad Ford had this to say about Thomas back in April when he declared for the draft:
“But he [makes] scouts a little wary because of his lack of elite athletic ability, he’s a ‘tweener stuck between the 3 and the 4 and his indifference on the defensive end.”
Thomas’ lack of defensive instincts might not hurt him with the Lakers since they gave up a plethora of wide open shots to opposing teams last season.
The Lakers haven’t worked out Thomas ahead of the NBA Draft next week, but there are several mock drafts that have him being chosen by the purple and gold. If chosen, Thomas would provide the Lakers an instant scorer and someone who isn’t afraid of the big stage.
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