For the Los Angeles Lakers, Harris has the opportunity to earn a job on the bench at the small and/or power forward spots. At 6-foot-8, Harris has shown the versatility to play both positions. So far through the summer, Harris has been in the Lakers’ facility working on his game. With this type of attitude, not only will he make a name for himself amongst the staff, but the players as well.
“We see Elias almost every day, and he’s talking all the nuances of what [assistant coach] Dan D’Antoni is teaching him,” said Mark Madsen to Mike Trudell.
During Summer League, Harris’ ability to understand what the coaching staff wanted was a big reason why he was signed. His drive to become better has definitely impressed Mike D’Antoni and the rest of the staff. If Harris can develop a good relationship with the staff, he could see important minutes during the regular season.
Harris is working to make “his shot a more balanced and consistent shot,” according to Madsen. “His driving game is something he’s spending a lot of time with [player development coach] Larry Lewis on.”
With Madsen and Lewis working with Harris, they will give him an extra boost of confidence heading into training camp. With confidence from the staff, Harris won’t find it as hard to fit in once the bigger names come back into the fold, such as: Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash and Pau Gasol.
“There’s no question in my mind that he can be a defensive stopper,” said Madsen.
The Lakers are hoping that Harris can develop into a solid small forward with the ability to guard the shooting guard position, along with the power forward position. They believe that his defense ability is the reason he could be a contributor for the team going forward.
Hearing that Harris is taking his improvement very seriously is good news for Lakers fans. If Harris can develop into the role the coaching staff envisions, hecould be an interesting option in the future.