D’Angelo Russell says the Lakers will “definitely” make the playoffs

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The 2nd pick in the draft and the first pick the Lakers, D’Angelo Russell says that he will lead the Lake show to the playoffs, in an interview with Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders, sounds confident that his presence, combined with the offseason additions of Lou Williams and Roy Hibbert, as well as the return of Kobe Bryant, can spur the second worst team in the Western Conference last season into the playoffs:

As far as team goals go, Russell essentially guaranteed L.A. will make the postseason next year.

“Expectations are high,” Russell says, “but this Lakers squad will most definitely be a playoff team.”

Russell was similarly unabashed when asked about his chances to win Rookie of the Year:

While some rookies might doubt themselves or buckle under the extreme pressure, Russell is so confident that he isn’t afraid to predict he’ll have a monster 2015-16 season.

For example, when asked if winning Rookie of the Year is among his goals this upcoming season, Russell responds as if the answer is obvious.

“Of course,” Russell said. “I have been grinding all summer to put myself in that position.”

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