Lakers News: Newest Laker Wang Zhelin: Highlights, Stats and More
Today, the Lakers agreed to trade Marc Gasol to the Grizzlies. The Lakers had to give up a draft pick and some cash, but in return they did receive the draft rights to the Chinese Basketball Association star, Wang Zhelin.
Currently, Wang Zhelin is a player for the Fujian Sturgeons in the Chinese Basketball Association. He's a 7-footer weighing in at 270, and was actually originally drafted by the Grizzlies in 2016 in the second round.
Zhelin does have some NBA style experience. He played in the 2018 NBA summer league as a member of the China men's national basketball team. He played in only a few games.
In the CBA (Chinese Basketball Association) Wang Zhelin won the 2019 MVP. He's also a four-time CBA All-Star and was the 2013 CBA Rookie of the Year. His best overall year was his MVP year where he averaged 25.7 PPG, 13.9 RPG, and 2.3 APG in 46 games for the Fujian Sturgeons. Here are some highlights from a game where he dropped a casual 51 points and 13 rebounds.
Now it is likely that he may never see the NBA floor. The priority in this trade was to clear Marc Gasol off the Lakers roster, save some future cap space, and to offset the draft pick the Lakers are sending to Memphis. At the age of 27, that the Memphis Grizzlies never brought him over for some development to adjust to the NBA style of play probably hurt future development to see any good NBA playing time. This is no certainty of course, but the story is far from original. Still, it is possible the Lakers have a real interest in Wang Zhelin's game.