L.A. Defenders’ Jabari Brown Finally Gets His Shot With L.A. Lakers


The Los Angeles Lakers picked up their 17th win of the season Tuesday night. A bittersweet victory for all the fans onboard team tank. Fear not, the team still has the fourth-worst record in the NBA.

The Lakers also picked up a new player. His name is Jabari Brown. He was plying his trade with the Los Angeles D-Fenders. They are the D-League affiliate of the purple and gold. He was signed to a 10-day contract on Tuesday. The NBA granted the Lakers a hardship exemption to add a 16th player to the roster.

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Brown (22) is a 6-foot-4 shooting guard who played alongside rookie sensation Jordan Clarkson. They were the Missouri backcourt before they elected to join the NBA. Brown leads the D-League in scoring with 24.4 points per game. His shooting percentages are solid across the board. He is making 45.7 percent of his two-pointers, 39 percent from three and he’s an 83-percent free-throw shooter.

Brown can score in a variety of ways. He can spot up, score on pick-and-rolls and drive to the basket. A bit undersize for a two-guard, but he has an array of moves to create separation to get his shot off. Brown is going to be instant offense off the bench or perhaps Byron Scott may decide to reunite Clarkson and Brown in the backcourt for the remaining 20 games.

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  • The injury-plagued Lakers are currently down four players. Recently the team lost Ronnie Price to a season-ending elbow injury and Nick Young has been sidelined for the past 8 games. Young’s return to the team is unknown which may have persuaded the team to tap into their D-League affiliate. The team currently has three healthy (knock on wood) guards on the roster.

    It’s a bit unusual for the Lakers to call-up players from the D-Fenders organization because they are rarely in a position of need. I personally love this acquisition for the simple fact of…why not? The Lakers are heading towards receiving a lottery pick to speed up their rebuild. They have plenty of prospects with the D-Fenders which could develop and immediately contribute to the team.

    Point being is that there is a diamond in the rough in the D-League.

    A prime example is Hassan Whiteside of the Miami Heat. According to David Aldridge of NBA.com, Whiteside worked out for the Lakers before the season. The club elected to invite Wayne Ellington instead of Whiteside. I bet the front office is kicking themselves right about now. Point being is that there is a diamond in the rough in the D-League.

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    The D-League is more than a place where NBA rejects land. It’s a place for young players to mature and refine their skills. A platform for young players to assimilate to life in the NBA. Going back to Brown, he was on the Lakers’ training camp squad before being cut. Coach Scott noted that he “was too laid back” and wanted more assertiveness from the young guard. Safe to say, Brown heard the coach loud and clear.

    The Lakers coach said that Jabari will make his debut on Thursday against the New York Knicks. If Brown’s spell with Los Angeles is successful, the Lakers may continue to utilize their affiliate on a constant basis.

    D-Fenders players to keep an eye on are Roscoe Smith (18.7 points, 11.8 rebounds, 28 double-doubles), Vander Blue (21.7 points, 5.4 rebounds, 5.4 assists, 8 double-doubles and 2 triple-doubles) and Jamaal Franklin (20.8 points, 8.5 rebounds, 5.7 assists, 6 double-doubles and a triple-double)