Michigan's Zavier Simpson signs with Lakers
By: Mike Stiles -
Thursday, November 19, 2020
Zavier Simpson (photo courtesy of DFP)
(LOS ANGELES) – Zavier Simpson didn't hear his name called during Wednesday's 2020 NBA draft. But that doesn't mean teams didn't have any interest in him. Michigan basketball's winningest player is headed to the Los Angeles Lakers on an undrafted free-agent deal, according to The Athletic. Simpson will join the NBA's defending champion, and if he wins a roster spot, will play alongside LeBron James. Simpson left Ann Arbor as one of the most decorated and productive players in program history, appearing in 146 career games with 96 starts. He helped lead the Wolverines to the national title game in 2018, and was perhaps the most important player on the roster for the past two seasons. In 2019-20, he averaged 12.9 points, 7.9 assists and 4.5 rebounds, and was the maestro behind Michigan's ball-screen attack in Juwan Howard's first season as head coach. As with most undrafted free agents, Simpson faces an uphill battle to make the Lakers' regular-season roster. He will have to prove he can get downhill against bigger, faster and longer defenders, and his 3-point shooting remains a question after shooting 31.4% from outside during his college career.