Lakers' Josh Hart Wins Las Vegas NBA Summer League 2018 MVP

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistJuly 17, 2018

LAS VEAGS, NV - JULY 16: Josh Hart #5 of the Los Angeles Lakers goes to the basket against the Cleveland Cavaliers during the 2018 Las Vegas Summer League on July 16, 2018 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2018 NBAE (Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images)
Garrett Ellwood/Getty Images

Los Angeles Lakers guard Josh Hart was named the Las Vegas Summer League's MVP prior to Tuesday's championship game against the Portland Trail Blazers

Hart enters the title tilt averaging a league-high 24.2 points per game, a mark that was bolstered by a 37-point outburst in the Lakers' 112-109 double-overtime win against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the semifinals. 

"Guy's been an absolute stud game in and game out," Lakers summer-league coach Miles Simon told the team's official website. "He's been tremendous."

He also earned major praise from Lakers president of basketball operations Magic Johnson. 

"Some guys better watch out because he's pushing to start," Johnson told reporters last week, according to the Los Angeles Times' Tania Ganguli

The Lakers' depth chart is suddenly crowded on the wing with Lance Stephenson and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope both penciled into the depth chart at shooting guard, but it's hard to knock Hart's credentials. 

The 23-year-old shot 46.9 percent from the field as a rookie, and he led all Lakers players (minimum 500 minutes played) with a 39.6 percent conversion rate from beyond the arc—including 41.3 percent on long-distance catch-and-shoot opportunities. 

In a Lakers offense that's suddenly craving floor-spacers alongside LeBron James, it's easy to envision Hart rocketing up the depth chart and giving L.A. some added offensive versatility if he can continue the ascent toward the top of his developmental parabola. 

   

Stats courtesy of NBA.com

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