Los Angeles Lakers
The Lakers drafted Jalen Hood-Schifino over Cam Whitmore
The Los Angeles Lakers robbed us fans of LeBron James throwing crispy clean passes to Cam Whitmore for a highlight reel dunk. The Lakers robbed the fans of a budding star in one of the biggest basketball markets. The Lakers robbed the fans of hope this season in regards to any postseason success. The Lakers did this all when they selected Jalen Hood-Schifino with the 17th pick, rather than take Whitmore.
This is a tough pill to swallow. The Lakers had the opportunity to bring in a potential top-5 pick who was sliding on draft night. He was right in their grasp, but they decided to let him fall a bit more. Boy oh boy do the Lakers wish they had Cam Whitmore now. This team is in free fall. They are 24-25 and right on the bubble of the play-in tournament. The Lakers could use another impactful rotation piece. This is where Whitmore comes in.
While the Lakers don't necessarily need another forward on their roster, there is no denying that Whitmore would be much more adept in helping this team reach the postseason than Hood-Schifino. Hood-Schifino needs many more reps to even remotely begin to help this team. The Lakers must do everything in their power to win NOW. LeBron is not getting any younger, AD is not getting any healthier, and this team's priority should be to win now.
D'Angelo Russell, Austin Reaves, Cam Whitmore, LeBron James, and Anthony Davis are a pretty gnarly starting five. Whitmore would be able to learn from James, potentially expediting his on-court development. With the season slipping away from the Lakers, any additional help would be welcomed to help bring LeBron and LA another championship.
The Lakers missed the mark on this assignment and failed to provide LeBron and co. with the best-supporting cast they could. Again, this team had the opportunity to grab a franchise-altering talent but decided to go with a relatively unproven bigger guard in the hopes he'd be ready to help this team compete. That hasn't happened and now the Lakers are left wondering, "Why me," as they look back on their fumbled draft choice.
There is no denying that the Lakers are the biggest losers regarding the teams that missed out on Whitmore. A big swing and a miss here.