Los Angeles Lakers Have No Reason to Hold Jordan Clarkson Back Now

Los Angeles Lakers fans have been clamoring to see more of rookie Jordan Clarkson, and they are finally getting their wish.

With Kobe Bryant resting due to old age and Ronnie Price out with a sore elbow, Clarkson received extended floor burn the past two games: 17 minutes in a loss Monday night to the Phoenix Suns, and 18 minutes Friday night in a loss to the Utah Jazz.

The results weren’t always pretty. The second-round draft choice is like a young racehorse in this, the nascent stage of his NBA career. He bolts from the starting gate and rushes headlong in his thirst to score points and make good things happen.

Clarkson shot 3-of-13 from the field in those two games combined. His stats for the season are 4.9 points, 1.5 rebounds and less than one assist per game, in 12.2 minutes per game.

However, it's not always all about the numbers. The 6’5” guard has blow-by speed, shifty maneuverability, good ball-handling skills and a hunger to improve. And despite his youthful exuberance, he’s not careless when handling the rock, with a very low 0.5 turnover rate (1.5 per-36).

Throughout the early part of the season, the Lakers have assigned their 22-year-old to their NBA Development League affiliate for extra game-time experience. Clarkson has averaged 22.6 points, 7.8 assists and five rebounds per game in five games as a starter for the Los Angeles D-Fenders.

His D-League seasoning has included a 35-point game, with 11 assists and six rebounds, playing 44 minutes of a four-quarter game in a 174-169 loss to the Reno Bighorns. Joining him that night in the D-Fenders lineup was fellow Lakers rookie Tarik Black

But with the Lakers’ record spiraling down into oblivion, it’s time to put more emphasis on growing young talent, and that means during the team’s own schedule. The postseason has become ever more improbable. It’s...

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