3: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
After stinking up the joint in game 1 with a total of 1 point in 29 minutes of play, KCP seemed to be a man on a mission from games 2 to 5.
Realizing that there was a really strong possibility that he could lose his place in the starting line-up to the likes of Dion Waiters, J.R Smith, or more than likely Alex Caruso. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope set a fire underneath himself and was determined to prove that trusting him with the starting job was no mistake.
An important factor in each of the Lakers wins, KCP seems to have found his shooting stroke, which is music to fans’ ears.
Shooting a scorching 40.6% from the 3-point line, KCP is doing exactly what Vogel wished he would do when he inserted him into the starting line-up.
Caldwell-Pope is also shooting within the flow of the offense, he isn’t forcing shots that aren’t there to get his numbers up, he is usually the beneficiary of a player making the extra pass to a wide-open KCP and as Mike Breen would say “BANG!!!!!”.
KCP has earned his spot in the starting line-up, his willingness to help out on defense, his ability to hit the 3-point shot, and his newfound affection to passing up a good shot to get his team-mate a great shot is an extremely welcome development for the purple and gold.
With Rajon Rondo on the mend and soon to be back for the purple and gold, It would benefit the Lakers to stick with the hot hand in KCP and see if his hot hand gets them a ring.