Former Syracuse forward Cole Swider had an impressive NBA Summer League debut for the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday. Swider, helping the Lakers to a 100-66 win over the Miami Heat, scored 13 points on 5-7 shooting including 3-5 from beyond the arc to go along with six rebounds a block in just over 19 minutes of action. Swider signed a two-way contract with the Lakers after not being selected in the 2022 NBA Draft.
Swider had a strong 2021-22 season in his lone with the Orange, especially over the last half of it. He really came on down the stretch. You can watch highlights of his season in the video above.
Swider came to Syracuse last offseason as a transfer from Villanova. He was not playing a consistently large role with the Wildcats and elected to look elsewhere for that opportunity. With the departures of Alan Griffin and Quincy Guerrier, Syracuse had the roster space and role available. With Swider's relationships with the coaching staff, it was a slam dunk for both sides.
Still, it took Swider a bit to get comfortable. He started the year 3-22 from beyond the arc but really turned it on over the last half of the season. In the final 13 games, Swider shot 40-77 (52%) from three point range and had several games where he took over offensively. He even seemed to get more comfortable on the defensive end as well and rebounded at a high level all season.
In total, Swider averaged 13.9 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.0 steals per game while shooting 44% from the floor overall and 41% from three. He also shot over 86% from the free throw line.
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