Summer League is coming up fast, as the Lakers are scheduled to tip off the annual Las Vegas tournament on July 7 against the LA Clippers.
This year’s roster is especially loaded, as it features three returning Lakers, four draft picks and two South Bay Lakers standouts.
All eyes in Vegas will be on the NBA’s second-overall draft pick, who will make his unofficial Lakers debut at Summer League. This will be Ball’s first opportunity to flash his trademark passing and deep range since averaging a nation-best 7.6 assists and 2.2 3-pointers at UCLA.
The reigning NBA Gatorade League MVP, Blue has spent the past three years lighting up the scoreboard for the South Bay Lakers (formerly Los Angeles D-Fenders). He was especially dangerous last season, scoring the league’s third-most points (24.8) and hitting its most free throws (7.7)
Suiting up for the G League’s Windy City Bulls, Brown offered up 10.7 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game last year. From the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, Brown was also the 2014 Horizon League Defensive Player of the Year.
Selected 42nd overall by the Lakers this year, Bryant has been touted as a potential stretch five that can also protect the rim. At Indiana last season, he hit 38.3 percent of 3-pointers and used his 7-foot-6 wingspan to swat 1.5 shots.
A member of the Oklahoma City Blue, Caruso put his floor-directing skills to good use in the G League, averaging 11.9 points and 5.2 assists while hitting 40.1 percent of 3-pointers. He was also a game-changer on the other end, picking up 2.2 steals.
After going undrafted in June, Dozier will find himself competing alongside the Lakers’ young talent in July. He was a standout during the NCAA Tournament, earning East Regional All-Tournament Team honors, while helping South Carolina to the Final Four.
Drafted 30th overall, Hart brings a championship pedigree to the Lakers, having helped Villanova to the 2016 NCAA title before earning a spot on the All-America First Team last year. This will be his first chance to show off his trademark hustle and potential as a 3 and D wing for the Lakers.
After recently being named Second Team All-Rookie, Ingram is looking to build off a strong end to his first campaign in the NBA. the 2016 second-overall pick scored double figures in each of his last 16 full games and developed a knack for attacking the rim.
Kuzma’s all-around game has been praised by General Manager Rob Pelinka since the Lakers acquired him with the 27th pick this year. One of the Pac-12’s top five scorers and rebounders, Kuzma has impressed recently with his passing ability and transition play.
The Lakers recently picked up their team option on Nwaba’s contract after he impressed with his defense last year. He was a Defensive Player of the Year candidate in the G League before being called up to the Lakers, where he was arguably the team’s top perimeter defender.
Thomas was a marksman at Iowa State, where he led the Big 12 by hitting 44.5 percent from 3-point distance. He will certainly prove to have a place in the league if he can hit that clip from NBA range, particularly if he can also continue to make 2.2 triples per contest.
After spending preseason on the Lakers’ training camp roster, Wear served as the D-Fenders’ stretch four last year, hitting 1.8 treys on a 34.2 percent clip. Wear also averaged 12.7 points and 7.2 rebounds during his first season in the South Bay.
A product of local Orange Lutheran High, York suited up for the G League’s Erie BayHawks last year, averaging 15.8 points and 3.7 assists. He was also one of the league’s top deep threats, hitting 2.4 3-pointers a night.
Big Zu put on a show at last year’s Summer League, earning rave reviews for his play on both ends of the floor. He kept it up when given the opportunity in the regular season, averaging 10.6 points on 59.1 percent shooting before his campaign was prematurely ended by a high ankle sprain.
The man in charge of this year’s summer squad is a three-time champion and one of the most popular coaches in the NBA. Having ended his first year as an NBA assistant, Buechler will guide this team while flanked by Brian Keefe, Mark Madsen and Miles Simon.