Why Brandon Bass Can Help Julius Randle’s Ascension with the Los Angeles Lakers

With the future of the Los Angeles Lakers looking like it will be in the hands of their recent draft picks, it's on the team's veterans to shepherd the young guys to get the most out of their abilities.

D'Angelo Russell and Jordan Clarkson couldn't dream of a better mentor in Kobe Bryant, who can show them how an all-time great guard and team leader should go about his business.

Julius Randle, while he could still learn a thing or two from Bryant, needs someone else to show him the ropes of how to handle his own position in the pros.

That is why the signing of journeyman forward Brandon Bass could be more significant than expected.

Though Bass doesn't possess the raw ability of Randle, he's a seasoned vet who has been in many battles throughout his career and played in some meaningful games along the way. He started all 20 contests in the postseason for the Boston Celtics team that pushed the Miami Heat to the brink in the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals.

Here are a couple of specific ways Bass can help Randle grow in his first real NBA season.


The Art of the Jumper

Randle's strength offensively is his face-up game.

He's extremely comfortable handling the ball for someone his size and can beat just about anybody at his position off the dribble. He can either go one-on-one in isolation settings and use his jab step and lightning-quick initial burst to blow by his man or catch the ball in space off the pick-and-roll and penetrate a scrambling defense all the way to the rim.

Randle put on a show in Wednesday's summer league contest against the Dallas Mavericks, repeatedly getting to the basket and finishing with aplomb. He even found a nice crease to the hoop with his right hand, another spot that needs work.

What drove Randle's success in attacking the paint was the couple of outside shots he knocked down to keep the de...

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