The Los Angeles Lakers have not gotten off to a good start this season, and have seen a lot of players struggle. Julius Randle has had some very good games mixed in with some bad games, D’Angelo Russell is still adjusting to the speed of the game, and Kobe Bryant has had trouble with his shooting. One player that has played well so far is Jordan Clarkson, who is arguably the team’s best player at the moment.
At the start of the season, it was unclear how Clarkson would fit in with Russell playing point guard and Bryant returning from injury. The team also brought in Lou Williams, a streaky guard who is more comfortable playing with the ball in his hands. Yet Clarkson has adapted, and shown a lot of improvement in his game. He is confident when on the court, and has not shied away from the spotlight.
Clarkson’s outside shot has looked good so far, and he is shooting over 40 percent from deep. He continues to attack the basket and gets good shots in the paint, although he must continue to work on his decision making when getting by his defender. His movement off the ball is impressive, and he seems more willing to come off of screens looking to score.
Although the Lakers defense has struggled, it is encouraging to see Clarkson matching up against some of the better perimeter players in the NBA. He has a lot of work to do, but his energy is apparent and he has shown an improved work ethic defensively. He has the athleticism and size to develop into a good defender, and must continue to get better.
The Lakers should be happy so far with the improvement of Clarkson, although it is still very early in the season. They have a lot of players struggling, but Clarkson is playing confidently and producing good numbers. It is important that he keeps putting in the time to improve, as he is a key piece of the organization’s future.