Lakers’ Jordan Clarkson fits mold of score-first point guards

Point guard Jordan Clarkson, who led the Lakers with 16 points, attempts to score on a layup against Bucks guard Jerryd Bayless in the first half Friday night at Staples Center.
(Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

In many ways, Lakers rookie point guard Jordan Clarkson has shown he has the similar skills and makeup of today’s shoot-first point guards in the NBA.

At 6-foot-5, Clarkson is tall for a point guard and he’s really more of a combo guard, Lakers Coach Byron Scott said.

Scott said that’s not a bad thing for Clarkson, considering the success of point guards who seek to score such as Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook, Cleveland’s Kyrie Irving, Golden State’s Stephen Curry and Chicago’s Derrick Rose.

“I think more of the point guards that we have, especially the ones that are very successful, are all score-first-type point guards,” Scott said. “I think Jordan is in that same mold, where he’s looking to score and he’s looking for those opportunities.”


Clarkson started his 14th game of the season for the Lakers on Friday night against the Milwaukee Bucks.

In his first 13 starts, Clarkson averaged 13.6 points, 3.7 assists and 3.2 rebounds in 29.3 minutes. He had a career-high 22 points Wednesday night at Utah.

“He’s still trying to find a way to be a true point guard,” Scott said. “But I don’t think his natural instincts are going to ever be that. But I think he can be very successful in being a point guard in this league because of all of the other guys that we’ve seen that’s been able to do that as well.”

Scott said Clarkson’s improvement as a point guard will come with “more experience” and the “game slowing down a little bit for him.”


“He’s starting to find some of those things, as far as running the offense and hitting the guy at the right time and things like that,” Scott said. “He’s starting to find those things. But it takes time.”

Young still injured

Nick Young missed his second consecutive game with a swollen left knee.

Scott said he’s not sure when Young will be able to return.


“He’s getting better,” Scott said. “It’s just slow. The swelling is going down, but it’s just not going down to the point where he can go out there and perform.”