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The Los Angeles Lakers continued meeting with potential prospects at the NBA Draft Combine this weekend with Indiana forward OG Anunoby the latest on the list.
Indiana forward OG Anunoby met with the Lakers at the combine. Said Magic Johnson was energetic. There was lots of talk of defense.
— Tania Ganguli (@taniaganguli) May 12, 2017
Draft Express lists Anunoby 14th in their latest mock draft, but there are concerns surrounding the forward. Anunoby’s season was ended early in January when he suffered a knee injury that required surgery and ended his season.
The medical reports surrounding Anunoby and the fact he likely won’t be ready to play until 2018 could very well make teams cautious about drafting him. While the Lakers are already locked in on four players with their potential top-3 pick, there’s an outside chance Anunoby could slip into the range of the Lakers’ second first-round pick, gained in the Lou Williams trade.
In his limited time in Bloomington, Anunoby showed his skill set, most notably on the defensive end. He burst onto the scene as a freshman in the 2016 NCAA Tournament after locking down future lottery pick Jamal Murray in the Hoosiers’ win over Kentucky.
With a wingspan measured at just over 7’2″ this weekend and a vertical that allowed him to dunk like this, this, and this, it’s no surprise why he’s still considered a lottery pick and someone the Lakers could be interested in.
Anunoby would represent an instant upgrade on the defensive end once he’s healthy. With the Lakers not likely to contend in 2017 given Magic Johnson’s recent comments about saving cap money for free agency in 2018, drafting Anunoby and waiting on him to recover makes sense.