The Los Angeles Lakers were apparently laser-focused on adding 6-foot-9 international point guard Isaac Bonga in the 2018 NBA Draft.
Los Angeles was one of the first teams to scout Bonga when he was playing overseas, per Bleacher Report’s Eric Pincus. In fact, one trip was attended by general manager Rob Pelinka and director of scouting Jesse Buss.
The 19-year-old seemed destined to play for the Lakers during the pre-draft process.
“He had worked out privately at the team’s El Segundo headquarters on May 24. The Lakers were the only team he worked out for … While some teams considered Bonga a draft-and-stash candidate, his representatives at Wasserman stressed their desire to have him in the NBA – or development league – next season.”
While some around the league expected he would play overseas for the next few seasons, it seems his agent wants him playing basketball in the United States as soon as possible.
Even if he primarily plays in the G League, which seems likely, it’s clear that Los Angeles wants him. The Lakers traded a 2019 second-round pick just to make sure they had two chances in the second round to select him.
He is a lengthy player with good court vision. He may take some time to develop, but he could also be one of their 15 roster players next season judging by how quickly L.A. signed him this summer.