Jordan Clarkson will continue to wear the color gold proudly in the NBA.
With the 16th pick in the 2nd round of the 2014 NBA Draft, Clarkson was selected by the Washington Wizards and immediately traded to the Los Angeles Lakers, according to Adrian Wojnarowski. This is the third year in a row that at least one Tiger has been selected in the draft, as Marcus Denmon and Kim English were both taken in 2012, and Alex Oriakhi was selected in the 2013 draft.
Clarkson, who only played for one year under former head coach Frank Haith after transferring from the University of Tulsa in 2012, was a bright star on an underwhelming Missouri Tigers team last season. Clarkson averaged 17.5 points per game and 3.4 assists per game in 35 appearances this season. Clarkson was selected to the 2nd Team All-SEC squad, along with fellow draft pick James Young.
Clarkson has a legitimate chance to make an impact for the Lakers this upcoming season. Outside of NBA legend Kobe Bryant, there are not many impact players on a Lakers team that had one of its worst seasons in franchise history last season.
Current starting point guard Steve Nash turned 40 this offseason, meaning he will not be able to play the minutes he did in his prime. Because of this, Clarkson will get a lot of time off the bench. Clarkson joins fellow draft pick Julius Randle, who he saw this season in Randle’s one season with Kentucky.
After last season at Missouri, Clarkson is used to disappointment. And unless LA lands a marquee free agent like LeBron James or Carmelo Anthony, it appears the Lakers won’t be much better this season. But once the Lakers return to the powerhouse they usually are, Clarkson will most likely be an important piece of an important franchise.
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