The Los Angeles Lakers have selected Julius Randle out of Kentucky with the seventh-overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. Randle, 19, averaged 15 points and 10.4 rebounds per game through his freshman season and was widely projected to the Lakers in mock ups leading up to the official selection.
Randle was considered a top-five prospect at the start of his college season but was pushed out with the rise of Joel Embiid and rocketing stock of Australian point guard Dante Exum. The 6'9, 250 lb. forward measured a seven-foot wingspan at the NBA Draft combine, alleviating some concerns about his length limiting him. He currently measures out similar to David Lee.
The Lakers make a big stride in building a new frontcourt by adding Randle into the mix. Both Pau Gasol and Jordan Hill, Los Angeles' primary power forwards, are unrestricted free agents this summer. Randle is an NBA-ready talent who should be able to provide quality minutes early in his career.
Los Angeles held a private workout with Randle and reportedly came away very impressed. Quotes and highlights from the workout can be seen here. They also took extended looks at other prospects like Marcus Smart, Aaron Gordon and Elfrid Payton.
Randle is the highest draft selection the Lakers have made since drafting James Worthy with the No. 1 pick in the 1982 NBA Draft. Be sure to check out our draft profile on the newest Laker, Randle, who should be ready to play at the professional level immediately.