Andrew D. Bernstein

Lakers coach Byron Scott said Wednesday he's leaning toward starting Wesley Johnson over Nick Young at small forward, according to a tweet from Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News. 

September 10, 2014

Lakers coach Byron Scott said Wednesday he's leaning toward starting Wesley Johnson over Nick Young at small forward, according to a tweet from Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News. 

Scott, who was named the Lakers' coach this offseason after the franchise parted with Mike D'Antoni, said he likes Johnson's athleticism and potential on defense and sees Young as more of an offensive spark off the bench.

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Johnson, 27, was selected out of Syracuse University with the No. 4 overall by the Timberwolves in the 2010 NBA Draft. He showed promise last season on a depleted Lakers squad, finishing the year with his best overall stats of his young career with 9.1 points, 4.4 rebounds, a block and a steal in 28 minutes per game. He started 62 of his 79 games last season. 

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The Lakers will look to bounce bounce back after one of their worst seasons in franchise history, in which Kobe Bryant missed most of the year with knee issues.

Los Angeles could end up employing a starting five this season of Jeremy Lin at point guard, Bryant at the two, Johnson at small forward, and either Carlos Boozer or rookie Julius Randle at the four with Jordan Hill and Robert Sacre down low in the post. 

 - Marc Weinreich