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Lakers’ CDR Could Give CPR to Lifeless SF Position – Fan’s Analysis

Chris Douglas-Roberts is a Low-risk, High-reward Option to Bolster the Lakers’ Lackluster Small Forward Spot

Yahoo Contributor Network

Chris Douglas-Roberts might give the Los Angeles Lakers exactly what the team needs - depth at the small forward position.

CDR scored seven points in seven minutes in his Lakers debut Sunday night as the Los Angeles lost their first preseason game 110-83 to the Golden State Warriors.

Preseason NBA wins and losses are irrelevant. What is important is how fringe players progress, hopefully putting themselves in a position to make the regular season roster and contribute off the bench.

The Lakers' biggest roster weakness is at small forward.

As a Lakers fan I am cautiously optimistic Chris Douglas-Roberts can help fill the void.

No Risk, High Reward

The Lakers signed CDR on October 1st after the 6'7" wing player played overseas for Virtus Bologna last year. He had previously played two seasons for the New Jersey Nets and one with the Milwaukee Bucks.

While his NBA career stats are not eye-popping - 20.3 MPG, 7.7 PPG, 2.2 RPG, 1.3 APG - there is more to Douglas-Roberts than meets the eye.

Remember - the Lakers signed him from the scrap heap. This is the ultimate no-risk, high-reward move for Los Angeles.

If CDR fails, no big deal.

But if he makes the roster and finds a role, he has proven he can play well at the NBA level.

High Potential?

While he has not been consistent during his NBA career, CDR has played in stretches at a high level.

Over the last nine games of his rookie season in 2009 he averaged 11.1 points, 2.6 rebounds, and 2.3 assists per game on 45% FG's- solid numbers for a first year player.

In his second season CDR had a stretch between October 31, 2009 and January 10, 2010 in which he started 24 of 26 games and averaged 16.2 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 2.0 assists per game. He shot 46% from the field and 85% from the line during this stretch.

During the 2011 season he had two 30-point games in the month of January alone.

Chris Douglas-Roberts has proven he can contribute at the small forward spot, especially by scoring when needed.

Metta World Peace is another year older (and creakier) and reserve Devin Ebanks has not done anything to warrant more time. CDR could realistically push World Peace and Ebanks for minutes while potentially backing up Kobe Bryant as well.

Going Forward

Again, I am not expecting Chris Douglas-Roberts to strap the Lakers on his back and lead the team to a title.

The Lakers don't need that.

What the Lakers need is a competent wing player who can come off the bench and score. Chris Douglas-Roberts has proven over stretches in the past that he can do just that.

And after scoring seven points in seven minutes in his Lakers debut, CDR may give some CPR to a lifeless Lakers SF spot.

Andrew Sweat is a die-hard Lakers fan. For more from this author, or check these out articles:

The Five Most Dominant Lakers Seasons Ever

Why the Lakers are the Smartest Team in the NBA

Lakers' Forgotten Studs: Eddie Jones, the Silky Assassin

Lakers' Forgotten Studs: Nick Van Exel and His Killer Swagger

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