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Texas prospect Kai Jones interviewed with Lakers' Rob Pelinka at NBA draft combine

USA TODAY Sports Media Group
USA TODAY Sports Media Group
 2021-07-24
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With the NBA draft approaching, the sports world will soon know who the Los Angeles Lakers will draft.

The Lakers have the No. 22 pick in this year’s draft, barring any trades that would see the pick traded or moves to acquire more selections.

Some of Los Angeles’ biggest needs for next season are a ball-handling, off-the-bounce guard, more shooters, a 3-and-D wing and a center for depth.

During the NBA draft combine in June, the Lakers interviewed prospects that would check those boxes, including Corey Kispert and Trey Murphy III.

The Lakers also interviewed Texas center Kai Jones, according to Jones himself during a session with NBA media, via Kyle Goon of the Southern California News Group:

Jones is regarded as a first-round pick, and his name has floated around as a potential lottery selection.

The 6-foot-11 big man played two seasons at Texas. As a sophomore, Jones averaged 8.8 points, 4.8 rebounds and 0.9 blocks in 22.8 minutes per game, usually coming off the bench. He made 58% of his shots on 5.5 attempts, including 38.2% from deep on 1.3 attempts.

Jones is an intriguing prospect because of his alluring upside. If a team can unlock Jones’ elite athleticism and floor-spacing flashes, he could become an electrifying center in the league.

The NBA draft will occur on July 29.

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