Can Jordan Clarkson Carve Out a Role with LA Lakers?

It's going to be difficult for Jordan Clarkson to find a role with the Los Angeles Lakers because his talent doesn't complement those of his teammates.

Still, general manager Mitch Kupchak selected him with the 46th pick in the draft because he thought that, perhaps down the line, Clarkson could be a contributor for the Purple and Gold.

I can certainly see Clarkson playing for the Lakers in a few seasons, but that’s not what we’re talking about here. We want to know if he will fit in with Los Angeles right out of the gate, and his current skills make that a bit of a question mark.


Just Another Jordan?

Fair or not, there’s a reason Clarkson fell to the second round. David Aldridge labeled him as a “streaky scorer” in March over at, which isn’t a compliment. Streaky is the code word used in basketball to describe players whose jump shots regularly check into the "witness-protection" program. tells us Clarkson made 32.2 percent of his collegiate treys. It’s probably worth mentioning the college three-point line is shorter in distance from the hoop than the NBA’s.

Given that Clarkson isn’t much of an outside threat, defenses will rotate off him to load up on better offensive players. That can be an issue, but as Dwyane Wade has proved time and time again, it’s not necessarily damning, provided the player has other facets in his repertoire to exploit. Think post-ups, cuts, drives and paint finishes.

If Clarkson had all that in his tool shed, he probably would have been drafted in the first round. Instead, he has different strengths, and I’m not sure how they will translate in the NBA.

Clarkson is a good and athletic ball-handler, which will allow him to get inside the paint. At 6’5’’, he can elevate and finish strong, but NB...

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