Checking in on South Bay: Kostas Antetokounmpo

(Image/Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

One of the Los Angeles Lakers’ two-way players this season, is Kostas Antetokounmpo. The surname is recognised worldwide, for obvious reasons. But Kostas’ talent, upon signing with the purple and gold, was relatively unknown.

Due to the Lakers’ deep veteran roster, Antetokounmpo, alongside fellow two-way player, Devontae Cacok, have had limited looks in the NBA thus far. Instead, developing their craft in the G League, with the South Bay Lakers.

Antetokounmpo has been called-up and featured in 3 NBA contests this season. With his debut coming against the Utah Jazz back in October. Followed by an appearance against the Charlotte Hornets, just 2 days later. His most recent playing time for the Lakers came against his former team, the Dallas Mavericks, in January.

In those 3 games, he’s only played in late-game situations. Averaging just 1.7 minutes per contest. He’s yet to record an NBA point for the Lakers. He was set to most likely to receive more playing time towards the end of this season, but the suspension stopped that. For the time being anyway.

Let’s continue and dig into Antetokounmpo’s progression in the G League throughout the 2019/20 campaign. Where he averaged 14.1 points, 7.8 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 0.9 steals, and 1.3 blocks. All through 38 games (25 MPG).

Select the link below to navigate through the pages to see Kostas Antetokounmpo’s progress this season.

NEXT: Antetokounmpo’s Consistent G League Season

Checking in on South Bay: Talen Horton-Tucker

(Image/Brandon Dill/NBAE/Getty Images)

He became a high-school legend in his native Chicago. He impressed in the collegiate ranks at Iowa State University. Talen Horton-Tucker then jumped to the NBA after being selected with the 46th pick in the 2019 NBA Draft by the Los Angeles Lakers.

At the high-school level, Horton-Tucker won 3-straight city championships with Simeon Career Academy. For Iowa State, where he spent just the single-season, he averaged 11.8 points, 4.9 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 1.3 steals, in 27 minutes per game.

To most Laker fans he was a relatively unknown prospect upon signing. But when you dig deeper, his unique 6-foot-4/234lb frame, along with his elite 7-foot-1 wingspan really does catch attention. His wingspan was the largest of any prospects at the 2019 Draft Combine. He’s also the second-youngest player on an NBA roster this season.

However, with the Lakers’ holding a deep, talented roster, full of veterans, 19-year-old Horton-Tucker has been assigned to the G League for the majority of the season. To develop and work on his craft.

Through 38 games (29.8 MPG) for the South Bay Lakers, he posted averages of 18.1 points, 6.2 rebounds, 4 assists, and 1.4 steals. This is on 42.5% shooting from the field, 30.9% from 3-point land.

Select the link below to navigate through the pages to see Talen Horton-Tucker’s progress this season.

NEXT: Horton-Tucker’s Slow Start to the Season

Interview: Nick Lagios (South Bay Lakers/LA Lakers)

Matt from Lakers Fanclub UK speaks to Nick Lagios, who is the Director of Basketball for the South Bay Lakers, and a Basketball Development Coordinator for the Los Angeles Lakers.

The interview was conducted at the Lakers’ practice facility in El Segundo, just before the South Bay Lakers’ game against the Memphis Hustle on February 8th 2020.

The full interview is embedded below. Thank you to Nick for taking the time to speak to us. We hope you enjoy watching the interview.

See our interview with Lakers rookie Talen Horton-Tucker here.

Interview: We Speak to Talen Horton-Tucker

(Brian Babineau/NBAE/Getty Images)

On Saturday 8th February, Lakers Fanclub UK were invited to attend the South Bay Lakers‘ G-League game against the Memphis Hustle. The game took place at the UCLA Health Training Center, home of the Los Angeles Lakers, in El Segundo, California.

Post-game, we managed to interview Lakers rookie Talen Horton-Tucker, who is currently on assignment with South Bay. We spoke about being drafted by the Lakers, his G-League progress, LeBron James/Anthony Davis, and more.

Thank you to the South Bay Lakers for the opportunity and the warm welcome, and thank you to Talen for taking the time to speak to us.

Check out the full interview below:


Lakers Fanclub UK are proud affiliate partners of Fanatics UK and the NBA Store Europe. We do possess unique promotional codes for both websites that can offer our readers and followers 10% off site-wide through the following weblinks.

Fanatics UK: http://tinyurl.com/y4vjv32b and enter the promotional code LAKERSUK10 at checkout to receive 10% off. This is not limited to just NBA apparel, but the discount can be used on MLB, NFL, NHL, Football/Soccer gear also!

NBA Store Europe: http://tinyurl.com/y585vud9 and enter the promotional code LAKERSUK10 at checkout. This is not limited to Lakers gear, the discount is available site-wide on any product you wish to purchase!

Gary Payton II, the Standout Early on for the South Bay Lakers

(Image/South Bay Lakers/Twitter)

Much anticipation surrounded the South Bay Lakers going into the 2019-20 NBA G-League season. In previous years, the Los Angeles Lakers themselves have been able to take on-board young talent to develop, in the tanking years, but not this season.

This season was set up was different, obviously, with the pairing of LeBron James and Anthony Davis, alongside a stellar supporting cast. Therefore, the young talent has been trickled down to the G-League, to represent South Bay, to further their development.

The Lakers’ G-League affiliate team looked stacked going into the season, with the likes of Talen Horton-Tucker, Zach Norvell Jr, Kostas Antetokounmpo, Devontae Cacok, Gary Payton II, David Stockton, Travis Wear, and Andre Ingram, among those on the books.

Image result for gary payton 2 south bay lakers
(Image/The Lake Show Life)

All eyes have been locked on recent draft pick Horton-Tucker, two-way players, Antetokounmpo and Cacok. Eyes have also been set upon former two-way player, Norvell Jr, who recently lost his place to Cacok. But another name has stolen the show so far this season for South Bay. Gary Payton II, son of “The Glove” himself.

Production is sometimes hard to come by in the G-League, with numerous players looking for touches to impress the onlooking NBA outfits. Although, production has not been an issue for Payton II. His numbers are looking ever-so impressive.

Through 12 games, as South Bay sit 7-5, he is stuffing the stats sheet. Averaging; 18.5 points, 9.1 rebounds, 6.3 assists, 3.4 steals, and 1.1 blocks. All of this has been on an incredibly efficient 57% shooting from the field. Payton II has broken the 20 point barrier on 5 occasions, and has recorded 9 double-doubles already this season.

On December 10, Payton II recorded a season-high 30 points, against the Santa Cruz Warriors. Alongside the flurry of points, he added 7 rebounds, 10 assists, 3 steals, and 1 block, on 14-20 shooting.

What’s been even more impressive, is that pretty much all of his offensive damage, in terms of points, has been done from within the arc. Payton II’s 3-point game is virtually non-existent (15%), but that doesn’t appear to effect him, instead finishing at the rim at will, with the occasional ferocious slam. Whilst in-between, exercising his vision, and dishing out sweet assists to teammates.

Additionally, being just 6-foot-3 makes his rebounding numbers even more impressive. He can really do damage in that facet of his game, both defensively and offensively, where he is averaging 6.6 and 2.5 rebounds, respectively.

Defensively he is building a reputation as well. Again, his short height really doesn’t effect his game in this aspect. He is leading South Bay’s roster in steals with 42, the second is Cacok with 13. In blocks, surprisingly, Payton II is top too, with 13, trailing him is Antetokounmpo with 12. Very impressive for a 6-foot-3 guard.

A triple-double hasn’t been recorded yet for Payton II, but it will surely only be a matter of time. Multiple triple-double performances will be waiting in the wings, for sure.

At 27-years-old, these statistics aren’t a complete surprise, but the fashion in which he’s dominating games and leading a South Bay Lakers roster, packed with talent, is. Another NBA opportunity could come knocking very soon.

Image result for gary payton lakers
(Image/The Lake Show Life)

Payton II last gave the NBA a crack in the 2018-19 season, with the Washington Wizards. Where he averaged 3.7 points, 1.3 assists, 1 steals, through 3 games (5.3 minutes per game), in the capital. He did represent the Lakers in the second-half of the 2017-18 campaign too.

With the Lakers, Payton II featured in 11 games, averaging 3.5 points, 2.5 rebounds, and 1.1 assists, in 10.5 minutes per game. In the final contest of that season, against the Los Angeles Clippers, he scored a career-high 25 points, and also posted a career-high 12 rebounds.

The talent is certainly there, but time may be running out for Gary Payton II. However, he is doing everything right at present time, and multiple NBA teams must be casting an eye over the South Bay Lakers star. He may not find the NBA opportunity with the Lakers themselves, but he might find it elsewhere.


Lakers Fanclub UK are proud affiliate partners of Fanatics UK and the NBA Store Europe. We do possess unique promotional codes for both websites that can offer our readers and followers 10% off site-wide through the following weblinks.

Fanatics UK: http://tinyurl.com/y4vjv32b and enter the promotional code LAKERSUK10 at checkout to receive 10% off. This is not limited to just NBA apparel, but the discount can be used on MLB, NFL, NHL, Football/Soccer gear also!

NBA Store Europe: http://tinyurl.com/y585vud9 and enter the promotional code LAKERSUK10 at checkout. This is not limited to Lakers gear, the discount is available site-wide on any product you wish to purchase!