Lakers coach Byron Scott didn’t think Emmanuel Mudiay was a true point guard as the draft approached, and the coach questioned his decision-making, but Mudiay dismisses it as just “another human’s opinion,” writes Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News. Mudiay delivered 10 assists, albeit with six turnovers, in Denver’s win Tuesday over the Lakers, leading him to retort, “Thank you Byron Scott for saying I’m not a point guard,” tweets Christopher Dempsey of The Denver Post. Mudiay played down the stretch of the close game while D’Angelo Russell, whom the Lakers took with the No. 2 overall pick instead of Mudiay, sat on the bench. That left Russell searching for answers, observes Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times (Twitter link).
“I have no idea,” Russell said about how he can convince Scott he’s worthy of crunch-time minutes. “It’s just something I’ve got to deal with.”
Scott insists Russell will have his opportunities, though Russell wasn’t in the mood to compare himself to Mudiay, calling him “just another player,” as Bill Oram of the Orange County Register relays (Twitter links). See more on the Lakers amid the latest from the Pacific Division:
- The Warriors failed to reach extensions with Harrison Barnes and Festus Ezeli before Monday’s deadline, but Barnes and Ezeli are fond of their surroundings and GM Bob Myers remains committed to finding a way to keep them, as Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports details. “We worked hard to get both [deals] done, but we weren’t able to,” Myers said to Spears. “We made a good effort. They looked hard at what we proposed. Ultimately, they decided to see what the market was in July, which is fine. We will work just as hard then to try to work something out.”
- Metta World Peace, who’s on a non-guaranteed deal, has yet to appear in any games for the Lakers so far, but he’s OK with that, he tells Bresnahan. “It’s about looking at your surroundings, what you’re presented with, how you’re going to take that and become successful,” World Peace said. “How can I help the organization? How can I help myself? How can I help the guys? I’m just locked in. I’m focused on improving and winning. The minute you focus on something else, it’s a problem.”
- Caron Butler has averaged 12 minutes per game in three appearances for the Kings so far, but like World Peace on the Lakers, Butler’s offseason signing was in large measure for his experience and locker room presence, as Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee examines.