Farmar is working on jump shot
BY ROSS SILER, Staff Writer
Article Last Updated:10/07/2006
11:15:48 PM PDT
EL SEGUNDO - After all his teammates had left for the afternoon, Lakers rookie guard Jordan Farmar (Taft of Woodland Hills) stayed on the practice court Saturday taking onejumper after another.
Those extra 15 minutes of work were a sure sign of Farmar's determination. Even though he had to be back for a scrimmage in only five hours, Farmar would not leave the gym without feeling good about his shot.
Only six months after leading UCLA to the NCAA championship game, Farmar is starting over as a 19-year-old in the NBA. He played beyond his years on the Lakers' summer-league team but knows nothing is guaranteed as a rookie.
With three other ball-handling guards on the roster - Smush Parker, Sasha Vujacic and Shammond Williams - Farmar might get his minutes in the NBA Development League this season.
But he might also be able to challenge for a role, especially if he can knock down his jumper with consistency. Farmar summed up his expectations for the season as "just to be productive, whatever they need me for.
"If I'm going to play, I want to contribute as much as I can. I definitely want to play, I want to be out here and compete and make the guys ahead of me better so that we can improve as a team."
Farmar said he struggled a little with his shot in the firstweek of training camp.
The Lakers have worked with Farmar to change how he shoots. Farmar has a tendency to lean back slightly, which leaves his jumper coming up short. Now he is making a point of going up straight or leaning forward when he shoots.
Sure-handed: After a season of watching center Kwame Brown sometimes fumble away passes out of bounds, assistant coach Kurt Rambis' comment Saturday came almost as a revelation.
"To be honest with you, I don't think that I've noticed him dropping the ball in this training camp," Rambis said.
His biggest challenge comes not only in catching the ball, but in slowing down once he has it.
"You can think about the spot that you're supposed to be at all day long," Brown said, "and then you can't do nothing without the rock."