WHEN Lakers sophomore Jordan Clarkson talked about rookie D’Angelo Russell making the game “a lot easier for everybody,” he probably meant a lot more than just praising the basketball skills of the No. 2 overall NBA draft pick this year.
“He can pass the hell out of the ball… he’s able to move the ball well…,” said Clarkson after the Lakers’ first practice day.
Russell, the former Ohio State playmaker, did move well with the rest of the Lakers' Summer League team, which, by the way, now includes last year’s first round pick Julius Randle, in a video posted by lakersnation.com.
Russell's work, however, was far from done after the huddle.
Russell was already on the way to the other side of the court when Clarkson held him back and pointed to the other end where the practice balls were shelved and asked him pick some up for the players.
Check out the video of the practice, and if you want to see the Clarkson-Russell 'collaboration' right away, move to the 1:30 mark.
Talk about making the game becoming “a lot easier for everybody.”
Clarkson may have endured such 'rookie initiation' in his first year and is now just continuing the tradition, but he said he still has a lot to learn as a player and noted that he is also working on his leadership skills.
“I’m still making my transition in my sophomore year, I’m learning as well.”
As for Russell, perhaps he now knows that being the No. 2 pick overall in the NBA Rookie Draft doesn't exempt you from the 'rite of passage' league freshmen had to endure.