Pacific Notes: Lakers, Russell, Warriors

Executives around the league believe that the Lakers selecting D’Angelo Russell with the No. 2 overall pick is a legitimate possibility, Scott Howard-Cooper of writes. Howard-Cooper believes the scenario is more plausible if Minnesota selects Karl-Anthony Towns with the No. 1 pick. Bypassing Jahlil Okafor may be an easier choice for the team because of the overlapping skills that he shares with last season’s first round pick Julius Randle. They are both talented on the offensive end, but getting better on defense is expected to be a project for both players.

There’s more from the Pacific Division:

  • “Continuity” played into Golden State’s decision last summer not to pursue a Klay Thompson-for-Kevin Love trade, tweets Sean Deveney of The Sporting News. “If you want to be good,” said coach Steve Kerr, “you have to have continuity.” Thompson had a different reaction to the rumors about being dealt for a player he grew up with in Oregon. “I thought it was pretty cool, actually,” he told Rusty Simmons of The San Francisco Chronicle (Twitter link).
  • Part of the reason for the Warriors‘ success is that a pair of former All-Stars have embraced reserve roles, writes Ryan Wolstat of The Toronto Sun. Andre Iguodala and David Lee were established starters when they came to Golden State, but both now come off the bench without complaining. “Selflessness, that’s been the tone of this team, but that’s something that [Iguodala] started off with his decision,” said fellow reserve Festus Ezeli. “To be able to accept his role and then we all accept our role and that’s how a team works.” Iguodala is signed through the 2016/17 season. Lee will be an unrestricted free agent in 2016.

Chris Crouse contributed to this post.

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