Second-year player Josh Hart has emerged as the circuit’s leading scorer, while second-round pick Svi Mykhailiuk has been a surprise star, averaging north of 17 points per game.
First-round pick Moritz Wagner was playing well before he suffered an injury, too.
While a lot of credit can be given to the Lakers’ front office for drafting that trio, forward Kyle Kuzma praised former Arizona Wildcat Miles Simon for developing them.
Simon is entering his second season as an assistant with the Lakers, but is the head coach of their Summer League squad.
“Miles Simon player development is real,” Kuzma tweeted during the Lakers’ win over the Cavaliers on Monday.
Kuzma would know. The late-first-round pick made the All-Rookie First Team last season, after averaging 16.1 points and 6.3 rebounds out of Utah.
Kuzma has spent hours in the gym with Simon, working on his dribbling and an array of scoring moves.
The Lakers also have former No. 2 overall picks Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram on their roster, giving them one of the most talented young cores in the NBA. They won 35 games last season, a nine-win increase from the year before.
If Ball, Ingram, Hart, Kuzma and the others continue to improve, there’s no telling where the Lakers’ ceiling is now that they have LeBron James. They could even become a legitimate threat to the Warriors in the West.
Evidently, having Simon on staff will only help them achieve those aspirations.