D’Angelo Russell Hits Rough Patch

D’Angelo Russell seemed as if he was ready to learn the hard way, but getting benched versus the Nuggets is never a good look — not for a rookie trying to make a name for himself.

I’m sure we’ve all experienced that moment in life where things come together to create a heck of a mess and we’re stuck in the middle of it trying to crawl our way out.

Lakers rookie D’Angelo Russell isn’t in the worst of positions this early in the season by any means, but with the way that things are going so far for the point guard, you’d have to imagine things need to change soon.

Russell only looked good on defense when compared to his direct opportunities to face Emmanuel Mudiay, and it got to the point where Byron Scott had had enough.

But did the Lakers faithful really agree with him on the call?

Per comments first reported by ESPN and then echoed by Bleacher Report, Byron Scott seemed to put the emphasis on balance and nothing else.

Lou Williams has been productive so far in his days and games with the Lakers, but even then, it’s fairly obvious that throwing him in for a good part of the game over your most recent draft pick shows a lack of confidence.

And it also shows, even if unintentional and indirectly, where your heart is.

I don’t know that Scott meant anything personal by the move, but you’ve got to imagine that it hurts the confidence as Russell.

This comes largely because he is in the process of trying to learn — and without room to grow, how can we honestly expect Russell to do better next time?

Russell did not shoot well from the floor at all, scoring only seven points and making only three of his nearly a dozen attempts.

Right now, from looking at the stats that Russell has put up in four regular season games, the right amount of shots — at least, the ballpark figure, I should say — is ten per night.

Too high above ten shots puts too much pressure on him, for right now at least, and less than ten makes him feel unimportant in the grand scheme of things.

The root of this very well could be Kobe Bryant‘s constant attempts at giving the Lakers life on offense.

Bottom Line: Russell’s growth is ultimately up to Byron.

If the focus shifts more into the team effort, as said before, even before the season, by the majority of critical news outlets, then everything will hopefully dissipate.

But it starts and ends with the attitude and game plan of Byron Scott — because if he’s not convinced that it’s the way to go, you can rest assured that it will not happen or come to pass.