The Los Angeles Lakers were able to turn their squad around just before the trade deadline ended on Feb 9. It was something the fans dreamed of since the season began because of their poor roster construction. However, even after all changes in the team, they lost a game before the All-star weekend. Although the team managed a decisive win over the Golden State Warrior, they were playing with the second unit. And the upcoming clash today will lay the foundation for the rest of the season this year.
The Lakers have had issues for the last two years, which has stopped them from being the top team. So when Rob Pelinka managed to bring in many players, the fans got excited about their future this season. Even LeBron James is extra motivated to make this season a success because of the failure they had last year. The 38-year-old even made a statement in the All-star event that the last 23 games will be the most important for him. And this time, he will have better support around him. Even Magic Johnson, ex-Lakers legend, believes D’Angelo Russell has come back more mature and better than ever.
New Russell Could Lead The Lakers To The Playoffs
It is not the first time that D’Angelo is wearing a Purple and Gold jersey, and he impressed everyone. The fans anticipated his return the most among all the players that came to LA in the trade market. Fans like him and his players, and now even Magic likes how the point guard has developed over time. Johnson was the person responsible for Russell’s trade away to Brooklyn Nets because he still had more to learn. However, on his return, Magic said, “I think D’Angelo has really grown and matured.“
The Lakers drafted him in 2015, but after spending two years with them, he was off to Brooklyn Nets. At that time, Magic believed that he was not ready to become one of the Lakers. And he was also involved in a controversial incident where he leaked a video of his best friend confessing about cheating on her fiance. This made him a player to stay away from, and he did not make many friends in the NBA. Even though he showed potential performance, he was still famous for the off-court drama he created. In his first stint, he was averaging 14.3 points and 4.0 assists, which makes him a valuable young asset.
In Russell’s 57 games for the Minnesota Timberwolves, he was averaging 17.9 points with 46.4 percent shooting from the field. Moreover, he was also good at making points from beyond the arc, making him more valuable. And it is surprising that Minnesota let him leave so easily. Anyhow, it is good news for the Lakers, and he will be a great help in the last push.