Update: Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders says the Lakers are “adamant they have promised nothing to anyone.” Original story follows.
As rumors swirl over which player the Los Angeles Lakers will select with the No. 2 pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, a report has surfaced that they may have already decided.
According to John Gambadoro of Arizona Sports 98.7 (a Phoenix-based radio station), Kansas forward Josh Jackson “has been promised” and that said promise “likely” came from the Lakers, although Gambadoro himself notes it’s possible it came from the Philadelphia 76ers.
In draft parlance, a “promise” means that a team tells a player and his agent that they’ll select him in their draft slot if he’s available, so connecting the dots with the context of Gambadoro’s connections with the Suns, this likely means that’s why Phoenix thinks this is why Jackson hasn’t worked out for them.
Does this mean the Lakers are for sure drafting Josh Jackson? Absolutely not. A lot of this stuff around draft time is theory-based, and it’s likely that this information or idea is coming from the Suns or someone around the Suns in this case. That person (or persons) don’t necessarily have knowledge on the Lakers’ thinking, they could just be connecting dots based on the information they have.
It’s also worth noting here that the Lakers are reportedly interested in confusing the teams behind them in the draft, so this could be the results of that effort.
Still, with Gambadoro having broken numerous stories about the Suns before (notably the Steve Nash sign-and-trade to the Lakers), all of this stuff is at least worth noting heading towards what seems poised to be a roller-coaster of a draft night on June 22.
Here is an updating list of every player the Lakers have worked out or met with. Harrison Faigen is co-host of the Locked on Lakers podcast (subscribe here, or listen to our latest episode on Lonzo Ball and the draft below), and you can follow him on Twitter at @hmfaigen.