Lak­ers give Mu­diay a look

The 6-5 point guard who skipped col­lege to play in China works out for the team.

Los Angeles Times - - INSIDE BASEBALL - By Brod­er­ick Turner brod­er­ick.turner@la­times.com Twit­ter:@BA_Turner

The door opened to the Lak­ers’ pre-draft work­out Satur­day and there was Em­manuel Mu­diay go­ing through shoot­ing drills with the Lak­ers’ as­sis­tant coaches, sweat drip­ping down his face, a look of de­ter­mi­na­tion each time he shot the bas­ket­ball.

Mu­diay, in his first work­out for an NBA team, was try­ing to im­press upon the Lak­ers he would be the right choice for them to use their No. 2 pick on in the draft June 25.

He grewup a Kobe Bryant fan, say­ing he has some of the same char­ac­ter traits as Bryant that could serve the Lak­ers well if he is se­lected by them.

“Kobe, I ad­mire his de­ter­mi­na­tion,” Mu­diay said af­ter his work­out. “That’s what made me a fan of his. He’s got adog in him and that’s kind of how I ap­proach the game. You’ve got to be a dog.”

Mu­diay is a 6-foot-5 point guard who didn’t at­tend col­lege, es­chew­ing his com­mit­ment to play at South­ern Methodist.

He took his tal­ents to China to play for the Guang­dong South­ern Tigers, say­ing it­was for fi­nan­cial rea­sons, to help his mother, and to fur­ther his de­vel­op­ment as a bas­ket­ball player by fac­ing older, more ex­pe­ri­enced play­ers.

An an­kle in­jury lim­ited Mu­diay to just 12 games, but he av­er­aged 18 points a game on 47.8% shoot­ing, 34.2% on three-point­ers, 6.3 re­bounds and 5.3 as­sists.

With Lak­ers Coach By­ron Scott and Gen­eral Man­ager Mitch Kupchak watch­ing his work­out, Mu­diay said he wasn’t “ner­vous but anx­ious” to show his stuff.

“Iwas just ready to get out here and do what I had to do,” Mu­diay said. “As the work­out kept go­ing, I got com­fort­able.” When he saw the Lak­ers’ cham­pi­onship ban­ners on the wall and the tro­phies in a win­dow, Mu­diay, 19, said he had one thought.

“It made me want to get some,” he said, laugh­ing. “I’d love to be a part of some­thing likethis. I just want to win and get as many cham­pi­onships as I can. That’s the main thing.”

The Lak­ers, who will have per­haps two work­outs Monday, are in po­si­tion to draft a player of Mu­diay’s cal­iber be­cause they had a fran­chise­worst 21-61 record this past sea­son.

“I know the coaches want to change that im­me­di­ately,” said Mu­diay, whose next work­out is in New York this week. “And that’s what I’m about.”

The Lak­ers were im­pressed with the de­vel­op­ment of rookie point guard Jor­dan Clark­son, but Mu­diay is a ta­lent that many draft ex­perts pick to go in the top four.

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