Last week was a solid one for Wayne Ellington, one of few feel-good moments since his life was jolted by the murder of his father two months ago.
The boost he felt last Wednesday was financial, his contract with the Lakers becoming fully guaranteed, but in such confounding times for Ellington it was at least ... something.
"I've been through a lot already this season and we're not midway through it," he said. "It was nice to have a little relief and a little pressure off my shoulders. It definitely feels good."
Ellington admits he still hasn't recovered from the shock of his father, Wayne Ellington Sr., getting shot while sitting in a car in Philadelphia.
An arrest was made in the case last month, and murder charges were filed against 34-year-old Carl White, a parolee who was a suspect in another shooting and a robbery, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
It didn't bring closure to the younger Ellington.
"It's funny, I thought there would be. I thought it would give me relief, but no. There was no relief," he said. "It kind of made me a little more angry for some reason. It was strange. It didn't make me feel any better at all. A tough time, man."
Ellington, 27, was almost an afterthought for the Lakers several months ago, signed before training camp to see if he could add anything to a journeyman career.
Now on his fifth team in six NBA seasons, Ellington has become one of the Lakers' few reliable outside threats, averaging 7.1 points and shooting 39% from three-point range.
Despite the slight uptick in his career scoring average and the now-guaranteed $1.1 million contract, Ellington's thoughts don't stray far from his father, who was 57 at the time of his death.
"Some days are tough. Some days are a lot tougher than others. And some days are good," Ellington said. "Everybody says that's normal, though. I'm just trying to fight, man. Just keep fighting."