Lakers Rumors: Brandon Rush Would Solve L.A.'s Problems on the Wing
Brandon Rush would kill two birds with one stone.
Will L.A. land Rush?
According to the latest NBA rumors, the Los Angeles Lakers are in pursuit of a player that would fill holes on their second unit at shooting guard and small forward. That player is Rush, and he’d be a significant improvement over what L.A. currently has at the positions.
Yannis Koutroupis of Hoopsworld confirmed Rush’s link to the Lake Show. He tweeted:
Brandon Rush confirms the Los Angeles Lakers are interested in him. Negotiations are ongoing.— Yannis Koutroupis (@YannisHW) July 16, 2012
Matt Barnes is a free agent while Devin Ebanks and Andrew Goudelock failed to lock up a spot in Mike Brown’s rotation last season. Neither youngster showed any level of consistency as each recorded player efficiency ratings below 9.0. Considering that the league average is 15.0, Los Angeles is desperate for an upgrade on the wing.
First off, L.A. isn’t landing O.J. Mayo—get over it. He’s going to demand a salary that the Lakers can’t offer. And while Grant Hill is a solid option, Rush is the superior option.
In 2012, Rush recorded a PER of 15.25, emerging as a capable starter on the Golden State Warriors. As a restricted free agent, why would they allow him to walk? Well, he’d be taking playing time away from rookie Harrison Barnes, who also plays the 2 and 3.
Outside of Goudelock, Los Angeles doesn’t have a perimeter player on its roster that shot at least 35 percent from downtown last season. Rush, on the other hand, shot an incredible 45.2 percent. But not only that, he fits well on a team that’ll go through growing pains next year.
Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol all need their touches. Rush doesn’t. According to 82games.com, 78 percent of his field-goal attempts were assisted jump shots, so he’d be able to play off of the Lakers’ Big Four.
The cherry on top is that Rush is a solid defender and turns the ball over at half the rate of, say, Metta World Peace. He only averaged one turnover a game last season compared to World Peace’s two.
Assuming he doesn’t supplant World Peace in the starting lineup, Rush would instantly take the Lakers bench to another level in 2013.
David Daniels is a featured columnist at Bleacher Report and a syndicated writer.
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