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The Lakers are having a rough season currently 9th in the West with a 24-26 record. 

They have had multiple stretches where they lacked bodies due to injuries and covid protocols. They had to sign a few players to 10-day deals just to have players to suit up. One of those players was forward Stanley Johnson. 

The 2015 8th overall pick started his season in the G-League for the South Bay Lakers, the Los Angeles Lakers affiliate. After three 10-day deals with the big league team, it looks like he is here to stay as the Lakers have signed him to a 2-year deal. Stanley Johnson has certainly deserved his contract with the Purple & Gold and here’s why. 

Defensive Versatility

Defense is Stanley’s calling card. His defensive ability is top class. He can switch and guard almost any position on the floor. He has the speed to keep up with the best guards, and he has the strength to defend the bigs in the post. This is the main reason why the Lakers signed him. They need all the defensive help they can get and Stanley will provide that day in and day out. 

Ability to Put the Ball on the Floor

On the offensive end, Stanley has the ability to put the ball on the floor and drive. He has the ball handling skills to break down the defense and make the extra pass when the defense collapses. He also has the athleticism to finish well around the basket and can score when aggressive. 

Can Knock Down the Outside Shot

Lastly, he can also knock down outside shots when called for. He can fill in that 3-and-D role that the Lakers desperately need. He does not shoot them at a high rate only shooting around 30%, but he can still make some shots here and there which is always helpful and a much needed bonus to his defensive ability. 

Stanley Johnson has been getting a lot of minutes ever since he started his 1st 10-day contract, sometimes even getting starts. He has surely earned this contract and let’s see if he can help the Lakers climb up the standings and make a run for the title this year. 

Featured Image: Nathaniel Butler/nba.com
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