« He was lonely at the Lakers, he didn’t really have any friends »
In addition to the poor results obtained last year, the atmosphere was deleterious in the locker room of the Lakers. Several Angelinos players suffered from a cruel lack of understanding with their teammates, including one at the heart of the news in recent days!
The members of the front office knew the extent of their mission at the start of the offseason. After a terrible 2021-22 campaign ended prematurely, Rob Pelinka and his assistants found themselves in the obligation to upset the workforce of the Lakers. Not only because of his very poor performance on the floor, but also because of the very tense climate that reigned there.
Although no real settling of accounts has been captured by American television cameras, the Angelinos have clearly lacked cohesion in recent months. Some elements of the group would have been put aside, which was not likely to help matters for the franchise. A revelation of the genre has just been made… about a newly transferred element.
Talen Horton-Tucker too young for the Lakers?
While waiting to find a base for Russell Westbrook, whose isolation last season is no longer a secret, the Lakers recently got their hands on Patrick Beverley, recovered in exchange for Stanley Johnson and Talen Horton-Tucker. In his podcast « The Mismatch », Chris Vernon of The Ringer also claims that the young full-back also had few comrades in the team:
When I spoke with some people close to Horton-Tucker, I was told that he was very lonely at the Lakers, given that he was sort of one of the only young players on the roster. He had no teammates his age to hang out with. He was in an old team with a lot of veteran players. He didn’t really have any friends.
Only 21 years old, Horton-Tucker had few partners of the same age with whom to create affinities. Only Johnson, Wenyen Gabriel, or even Malik Monk came close to his generation. Lonely despite everything, his performances could have paid the price, he who was only shooting at 10 points per game, 41.6% shooting and 26.9% at 3 points.
It is therefore with a certain joy that THT had to learn of his transfer to Jazz a few days ago. In a Utah team in full reconstruction, the average age will certainly be much lower than in the Purple & Gold. A new adventure and a new environment that could prove to be greatly beneficial for a potential like his!
Russell Westbrook was therefore not the only case of isolation at the Lakers, since Talen Horton-Tucker was obviously living in the same delicate situation as him last year. Leaving Los Angeles did not necessarily have to be heartbreaking for the young fullback!