The Lakers held their third and fourth sets of draft workouts Monday, hosting morning and afternoon sessions with six players apiece.
Dakari Johnson, a reserve center for the Kentucky Wildcats, participated in his first workout in preparation for the June 25 draft.
The seven-foot sophomore averaged 6.4 points with 4.6 rebounds and 0.9 blocks a game, playing behind top prospect Karl-Anthony Towns.
Johnson spoke highly of his former teammate.
"He's very versatile. He's a hard worker," said Johnson of Towns. "He's always in the gym. He's just that type of player."
The Lakers may have the chance to take Towns with the second overall pick in the draft, presuming the Minnesota Timberwolves don't take him first.
Johnson is also close with Julius Randle, the Lakers' seventh overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft.
"I've been down here training. I've seen him a couple of times, hung out with him. That's my guy," said Johnson. "He's fearless."
On Monday, the Lakers auditioned players for the team's...Read more
Who's better: Kobe Bryant or LeBron James?
For more than a decade, the question of Kobe or LeBron has kept NBA fans at odds with one another. Lakers fans will say Bryant is the best player of his generation while the King James army will defend LeBron as the best player in the NBA.
So if anyone is still keeping an open mind on the subject of Kobe vs. LeBron, former Lakers star Shaquille O'Neal offered his take Monday on which one he thinks was better in each player's prime.
While speaking on the "Dan Patrick Show," O'Neal said he'd pick Bryant over James.
"I played with both of them," O'Neal said. "You know, Kobe has that killer instinct. And I'd probably have to go with Kobe. That's not a knock against LeBron. It's just that I know Kobe and I played with him longer. I've seen what he can do."
Still, O'Neal had only positive things to say about James.
"A lot of people try to compare him to [Michael Jordan], when he's more like Magic [Johnson]. But, you know, when he needs to take over...Read more
The Lakers have completed the purchase of a five-acre El Segundo property that will serve as the franchise's new corporate headquarters.
"With its proximity to the airport and beaches, clean air, diverse businesses and wonderful community, El Segundo is the perfect place for us to be," President Jeanie Buss said Friday. "We’ve been here for the past 15 years with great success, and we’re thrilled to secure the perfect spot to expand on that success and remain for many years as a part of this vibrant and growing area."
The Lakers are currently housed at the Toyota Sports Center, walking distance from their new site, which will be on the northwest corner of Mariposa Avenue and Douglas Street.
The facility, expected to be completed by spring 2017, will include the team's practice facility, corporate offices and a 750-seat exhibition court where the D-Fenders, the Lakers' NBA Development Team affiliate, will play their home games.
The team has hired Morley Builders as the general contractor. ...Read more
Former Laker Metta World Peace finished his season with Italy's Serie A club Pallacanestro Cantu on a less-than-stellar note.
The man who began life in Queens as Ron Artest and donned a uniform with The Panda's Friend where his name would be, was ejected from a playoff game Thursday against Reyer Venezia Mestre, which went on to win, 88-73, to advance to the league semifinals.
World Peace was involved in an on-court scuffle after some words were exchanged following a foul. Interestingly, it didn't appear to happen after one of his five fouls in a strange one-minute span.
No punches were thrown during the scuffle, just a lot of pushing, shoving and jawing as you can see in the YouTube video.
The ejection brings with it a two-game suspension, according to reports. The suspension would be served next season if he were to play in Serie A.
World Peace last played in the NBA with the New York Knicks in 2013-14. He played for the Sichuan Blue Whales of the Chinese Basketball Assn. in 2014-15...Read more
Kobe Bryant took in part of the Lakers' draft workout Thursday, watching six prospects the team might consider with the 27th and 34th picks in the June 25 NBA draft.
Bryant said he felt good, working his way back from a shoulder injury. He spent time chatting with Coach Byron Scott as the draft prospects spoke with the media.
"Just seeing the Black Mamba walk into our workout at the end, the first thing that came to mind is that he's a killer, and I'd love to play with a killer, said Virginia guard/forward Justin Anderson.
Anderson and Delon Wright, brother of Portland Trail Blazers forward Dorell Wright, both project to be late first-round picks.
Wright, a 23-year old, 6-foot-6 point guard averaged 14.7 points and 5.0 assists with Utah as a senior.
"I really don't care who is getting picked first. I think that I have the chance to be the best [point guard] coming out of the draft, so I focus on that," said Wright, who has also worked out for the Chicago Bulls and Indiana Pacers.
The Lakers began the workout process on Tuesday at their practice facility in El Segundo, hosting six prospects in preparation for the June 25 NBA draft.
"Today's group are not players that we're considering for the second pick in the draft, but there's a lot of players we'd consider at 27 and 34," said General Manager Mitch Kupchak, referring to the team's other two picks.
The team put Northern Iowa's Seth Tuttle, Minnesota's Maurice Walker, Gonzaga's Kevin Pangos, Arizona's T.J. McConnell, Maryland's Dez Wells and Iowa State's Bryce Dejean-Jones through their paces.
The Lakers got a big win when they jumped from fourth to second in the NBA's draft lottery.
"Our roster looks better, clearly, after getting the pick in the lottery last Tuesday," said Kupchak. "You know you're going to get a really good player. You're going to get a player that you're going to be able to control for at least five years, at a reasonable amount, before you have to consider an extension."
The Lakers won just...Read more