The Los Angeles Lakers selected Duke big man Ryan Kelly with the 48th overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft on Thursday night. The 6'11 forward could be a solid stretch-4 if his shooting ability translates to the pros.
Few players in the draft project as obviously at the NBA level than Kelly. A 6'11 big man that moves well, handles the ball and knocks down three-pointers, he's a prototypical stretch-4 in the pros should he stick.
However, Kelly's limitations -- poor athleticism, mediocre rebounding skills, average length -- make it a necessity that he finds his niche on the offensive end of the floor quickly. If he's not spacing the floor and knocking down open shots, it's hard to imagine most NBA teams finding much use for him.
For a Lakers team that's a mess right now, Kelly should come in and provide a spark off the bench. He's one of the better-shooting big men available in this year's draft, and he's surprisingly a good defender despite his athletic shortcomings. After four years at Duke, Kelly should also be a welcome presence in what some have called a divided locker room in L.A.