“Besides Bronny, He Was My Favorite Player”- LeBron James Showed His Support and Appreciation for 23-year-old Rookie

LeBron James hails Dalton KnechtLeBron James (Photo by Nick Cammett/Getty Images)

The Los Angeles Lakers made headlines by selecting Dalton Knecht as the 17th overall pick in the 2024 NBA Draft. This move is being hailed as a major steal, considering Knecht’s impressive college performance. Even before the draft, Lakers star LeBron James recognized Knecht’s exceptional athleticism after watching his games at Tennessee.

LeBron recently opened up, claiming the former Tennessee star is his favorite college basketball player apart from his son, Bronny James.

Dalton, besides Bronny, was my favorite player in college basketball. I did not think he would fall to 17 at all. I’m glad he did,” LeBron said.

After Knecht’s stunning last college season, in which he earned SEC Player of the Year and consensus first-team All-American honors, he was expected to be a top-10 pick.

LeBron even claimed he watched the Purdue vs. Tennessee game due to their rookie player.

“He’s a great player. We watched that Purdue, Tennessee, game because of Zach Edey and Knecht. Players, depending on who they are, will drive attention,” James said.

Nevertheless, Knecht had to wait until the Los Angeles Lakers made their decision. Now, with the Lakers, Knecht is anticipated to contribute to areas beyond scoring and outside shooting. His role will likely involve complementing the talents of LeBron James and Anthony Davis on both ends of the court.

Dalton Knecht and Bronny James Begin Lakers Journey in the Summer League Showdown

Dalton Knecht and Bronny James made their summer league debuts on Saturday against the Sacramento Kings. The Lakers’ No. 17 pick, Knecht, scored 12 points despite shooting 3-for-12 from the field in his first game.

Like his draft experience, Bronny James’ debut for the Lakers drew some criticism. He finished his first game with 4 points on 2-for-9 shooting, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, and 1 steal in 22 minutes.

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