As the Los Angeles Lakers have sought to fill their roster of players with one-year contracts, they also have opportunities for members of South Bay, its affiliate in the G League. That is, Alex Caruso, who remains in a two-way contract.
Caruso appeared in seven games last season, making seven appearances. He showed flashes of being a capable NBA player but spent most of the 2018-19 campaign with South Bay. However, injuries and the Lakers who are out of the playoff frame have put him in his rotation.
"His competitive spirit," said Lakers coach Luke Walton when asked about what he sees now that Caruso is getting regular minutes.
"Last game, he really fought offensively. Passes were diverted, things he usually does not do, he had an offensive night. But defensively, he was everywhere, changing, flying and catching loose balls.
"That's what you want from your guys who are going to play. If you have something in which you can always hang your hat, no matter what is happening, you will help your team. And he does it.
When asked specifically if Caruso is an NBA caliber player, Walton admitted that although it is a small sample size, the point guard proved promising. "Now, the way he's playing, I think he could definitely help teams win ball games," Walton said.
Caruso found a good pace by playing alongside LeBron James, who he recently credited with scoring 16 points against the Toronto Raptors.