Lakers Workouts: Prospect Power Rankings 2.0

The Los Angeles Lakers workouts have continued this week. They have been busy bringing in various prospects for pre-draft workouts in order to gain a sense of who to target in the late second round or as an undrafted free agent. The Purple and Gold have brought in a mixture of mid-major and power conference level players. They’ve recently started bringing in additional players to get a better look at their next potential prospect. Here are their rankings.

6) Haowen Gou Small Forward-Shanghai Sharks

Gou is a 6’7 200 pound prospect who most recently played in the Chinese Basketball Association. He averaged 14 points, 2 rebounds, and 2 assists in his last season before declaring for the draft. Gou possesses excellent ball control and can generate his own shot without the assistance of his teammates. He would more than likely earn a spot on the Lakers summer league team or be a draft and stash type of player.

5) Michael Devoe- Georgia Tech ,Shooting Guard

The Purple and Gold take another look at a Georgia Tech prospect, this time shooting guard Michael Devoe. He is 6 foot 5 and weighs 197 pounds. He averaged 18 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, and nearly 2 steals per game last season. While being named the ACC Tournament MVP, he was also named to both the regular and postseason ACC teams. Devoe is a legitimate two-way player who can be a nuisance on defense and score in bunches when needed. He should be high on the Lakers’ priority list of players to seek in the draft or free agent pool.

4) Jermaine Samuels-Villanova, Small Forward

One of Villanova head coach Jay Wright’s talented championship roster players has landed a workout with the Lakers. Jermaine Samuels, who stands at 6-7 and weighs 230 pounds, averaged 11 points and six rebounds last season. Don’t be deceived by his stats; he has a significant effect on the court by either using his muscular physique to force his way to the ball or by using his high energy for put-backs on rebounds.

If he earns the chance to develop under coach Jay Wright, he has the potential to be one of the next Villanova players who have made the league. He would follow in the footsteps of Mikal Bridges, Jalen Brunson, and Josh Hart.

3) Remy Martin-Point Guard-Kansas

Martin is an Arizona State transfer who last season played for Kansas. There, he also won the National Championship in a thrilling battle with North Carolina. He is 6’0 and weighs 183 pounds. He was a rotational player at Kansas, averaging 8 points, three rebounds, and two assists per game. It may be said that he was at his finest at Arizona State. But. it was at Kansas that he was a major ingredient in his team’s championship run; despite being shorter than most. He doesn’t let that bother him because he has no difficulty scoring and isn’t afraid of a larger defender.

2) Kenny Lofton Jr.-Power Forward/Center- Louisiana Tech

Kenny Lofton Jr was one of the best players in Conference USA and was one of the draft’s many overlooked prospects. He is 6-foot-7 and weighs 275 pounds. Last season, he averaged 16 points, 11 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 blocks, and 2 steals. During the season, he was named to the All-Conference USA Team twice and Conference USA All-Freshmen. He was also a member of the 2020 All-Conference USA Tourney Team and 2020 Conference USA Rookie Of The Year. The Louisiana Tech Bulldog terrorized his opponents with his towering body, frequently employing the bully ball style of play to earn his buckets.

Lofton Jr. is also incredibly quick for his size and an underrated passer. Not to mention he is a monster on defense; if the Lakers can get him, you have a power forward for the future.

1)Johnny Juzang- Point Guard UCLA

Another Bruin could be on his way to the Los Angeles Lakers roster if he’s able to impress them. Johnny Juzang, an all around great talent that basketball fans will remember for his numerous clutch moments in the NCAA tournament. The former Bruin stands 6 feet 6 inches tall and weighs 210 pounds. Last season, he averaged 15 points, 4 rebounds, and 2 assists. He set the entire PAC-12 on fire as he was a force on offense getting buckets after buckets.

His team lost to North Carolina in the semi-finals in 2021, but he still performed admirably. He might be the next Bruin alumni to don the Purple and Gold if he performs well and makes an impact on Lakers scouts.

*Honorable Mention*—Shareef O’Neal, LSU Power Forward

It was recently announced that the Lakers will conduct a draft workout with Shareef O’Neal, the son of former LSU Tiger and Lakers legend Shaquille O’Neal. Despite limited playing time due to injuries, he averaged three points and two rebounds per game. He had heart surgery less than two years ago, so it’s possible he’s still adjusting to the game, but make no mistake, the skill is there. At 6’10 and weighing 225pounds, O’Neal inherited his father’s physique.

Many people forget that he was ranked 41st in his 2018 basketball class, he was a phenomenal scorer and defender, and that it’s all about proving the skeptics wrong. It would be quite special to witness the next generation of the O’Neal family wear a Laker’s jersey, as his father did.

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