The Los Angeles Lakers continue to fill out their Summer League roster as the team was hard at work after the draft signing some of the top undrafted players. Former Gonzaga sharpshooter Joel Ayayi signed a two-way contract with the Lakers as an undrafted free agent, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. The Lakers also added Texas Tech guard Mac McClung, the exciting young prospect is known for his viral highlight videos dating back to high school.
Ayayi averaged 12 points, 6.9 rebounds and 2.7 assists while shooting 38.9% from behind the three-point line last season. The Gonzaga starting guard played a pivotal role in the Zags’ run to the national championship game. The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor had a second-round grade on Ajayi as the guard was his No. 47 ranked prospect. O’Connor described Ayayi’s game as having shades of Wesley Matthews and Vernon Maxwell.
“Outstanding cutter with natural feel for angles and timing to get open, and is a strong catch-and-finisher around the rim,” O’Connor described Ajayi’s strengths. “Great shooter with a clean release from NBA range. He’s at his best off the catch but he’ll hit an occasional shot off a screen, handoff, or pull-up. Good playmaker who can make every basic pass and push the ball up the floor on the break. He also displays vision to make more complex plays. Active on-ball defender who consistently puts effort into getting stops. With his combo of a high IQ and effort, he should fit in the league.”
McClung’s High School Mixtape Notched More Than 2 Million Views
McClung averaged 15.5 points, 2.7 rebounds and 2.1 assists while shooting 34.3% from behind the arc during the 2020-21 season. The guard started his college career with two years at Georgetown before transferring to Texas Tech.
McClung exploded in popularity thanks to some of his viral videos as the guard’s high school mixtape has 2.5 million views and counting. The new Lakers guard has 741,000 Instagram followers but faces an uphill battle to make the team’s roster.
McClung Remained in the Draft Believing His Skillset Is Better Suited for the NBA
There could be a pathway for McClung to at least begin his career in the G-League as he continues to develop as a player. McClung announced in May that he was staying in the NBA draft, emphasizing that the spacing at the next level could help his game.
“I just felt the timing was right for me to go all-in,” McClung told ESPN’s Jonathan Givony in May. “I looked at multiple factors and decided the best time for me to take this step was now. I feel the NBA game and spacing is suited for my play style, and I can’t wait to start this chapter of my life. I’m very blessed to be able to chase my dreams.
“…I can’t wait to show teams how much I’ve improved my playmaking ability and how hard I have been working on making the right reads in the pick-and-roll. Also I’m looking forward to showing teams my determination and will to win. I’m really looking forward to pre-draft workouts, going head-to-head with other guards in the draft, and showing teams what I’m made of.”
Givony praised McClung after a June 26 pre-draft workout in front of NBA teams. McClung is one of the more intriguing prospects that the Lakers will have on their Summer League roster.
“Mac McClung showed NBA execs his hops and shot at his NBA Combine Pro Day today,” Givony tweeted.