Former Duke Blue Devils star Grayson Allen will work out with the Los Angeles Lakers. But how realistic is it he would end up on the team?
Tim Bontemps believes the former Duke standout would be a good fit for a team with a late pick in the first round, which the Lakers acquired from the Cleveland Cavaliers (via Washington Post):
“Allen tested well across the board, impressing with his strength and agility scores — which ranked among the best … The athleticism Allen showed, along with his production at Duke, sets him up to be a perfect fit for a team looking for guard help off the bench late in the first round … He could be a player who will surprise everyone, even after his memorable Duke career.”
The Lakers have also worked out potential first-round picks including Ohio State’s Keita Bates-Diop as well as SMU’s Shake Milton and Allen’s Duke teammate Gary Trent Jr.
Potential second-round picks they’ve worked out include Villanova’s Omari Spellman as well as USC’s Chimezie Metu and St John’s guard Shamorie Ponds.
Rumors indicate the front office has promised 20-year-old big man Mitchell Robinson they would select him if he was available in the first round. Sam Vecenie of The Athletic reported that NBA executives found it “unlikely (but not impossible)” that such an assurance was given.
Los Angeles could decide to select any of the aforementioned players or a different prospect altogether with their first pick.
It’s possible that Allen, who played with Los Angeles forward Brandon Ingram in college, will still be available when they are on the clock in the second round.
Here is what Christian Rivas recently said about the former tandem (via SB Nation):
“Considering there will likely be younger, less problematic options in the first round, Allen could slip to the Lakers with the No. 47 pick. Allen played alongside Lakers forward and former No. 2 pick Brandon Ingram at Duke during the 2015-16 season, Allen’s best individual year with the Blue Devlis. During that season, Allen averaged 21.6 points on over 40 percent shooting from behind the arc while contributing 4.6 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.3 steals.”
The Lakers are targeting defense with their picks this year and Allen averaged a career-high 1.7 steals per game last season. Only one player in Allen’s conference (Syracuse’s Franklin Howard) had more steals.
His offensive box plus-minus and offensive win shares were also the second-best in the ACC, behind only teammate Marvin Bagley III.
The team is in a position to succeed if they land a superstar like LeBron James, Paul George or Kawhi Leonard this offseason. If this happens, they’ll absolutely need more scoring from their bench unit. Allen can help provide a winning mindset and add that kind of depth necessary to succeed immediately considering his age and experience.