Lakers News: 2nd-Round Pick Talen Horton-Tucker Agrees to Rookie Contract

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistJuly 13, 2019

Iowa State guard Talen Horton-Tucker (11) points to a teammate during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Baylor in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 conference tournament in Kansas City, Mo., Thursday, March 14, 2019. Iowa State defeated Baylor 83-66. (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)
Orlin Wagner/Associated Press

The Los Angeles Lakers signed second-round pick Talen Horton-Tucker to a contract on Saturday, according to ESPN.com's Ohm Youngmisuk. Terms were not disclosed. 

Horton-Tucker, who does not turn 19 until November, was the No. 46 overall pick in June's draft. The Lakers purchased the pick from the Orlando Magic as they attempted to round out their roster following the Anthony Davis trade, which left them needing to count every penny as they looked to add rotation pieces.

Horton-Tucker will be a developmental piece who will likely spend most of his rookie season in the G League or waving a towel as the Lakers compete for a championship. He entered the draft after an uneven season at Iowa State that saw him average 11.8 points, 4.9 rebounds and 2.3 assists on 40.6 percent shooting.

"Teams were saying they know I'm a better shooter [than that]," Horton-Tucker told Lakers reporter Mike Trudell of what he's been working on. "Just staying consistent in the gym and getting better ... that's been the key focus for me in the pre-draft process. I feel like I did that."

While Horton-Tucker is 6'4", he has a massive 7'1" wingspan and wide 233-pound frame that makes him able to defend at least three positions capably. He said his versatility was the thing that attracted him most to teams. 

"Keeping it versatile ... you gotta be able to do a lot of different things on the court," Horton-Tucker said. "Just get better every day is the most important thing, so I'm just gonna keep doing that."

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Many expected Horton-Tucker to land in the first round, so the Lakers may have gotten a steal. They're not expecting him to develop into a superstar, so it'll be a win if he becomes a solid bench piece. 

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