Jordan Clarkson is far from the first player in sports history to let their scoring dictate how they play in other facets of the game, but Luke Walton thinks it’s time to move on from that habit.
Clarkson possesses the physical tools to be at least a decent defender on the ball. Off it, his quickness should put him in position to nab a steal or two. His vertical athleticism should help him challenge for the occasional rebound in traffic. Walton has empowered him lately to help his teammates’ scoring.
For Clarkson it pretty much comes down to instincts and focus.
Walton believes these kinds of things could ignite his game in times when his shot isn’t falling, and following the Lakers’ most recent drubbing — this time at the hands of the Clippers Tuesday night — Luke publicly postured about what Clarkson can do to help a team when he isn’t necessarily having a good scoring game.
This, via The OC Register’s Mark Medina:
“He’s too good of an athlete. He’s one guy who loves to compete, but you can’t get locked in and focus on the fact you can’t make any shots,” Walton said. “That’ll come eventually. Get into someone on defense, make some steals, make some passes, take a charge, do something.”
This type of habit especially plagues young players, but at 24 years old, Clarkson should probably have addressed Walton’s concerns already. There are only 11 games to go in this Lakers season, so we’ll have to see what he can put together.