Sharpshooter Matt Ryan has essentially come out of nowhere to secure a spot on the Los Angeles Lakers’ opening night roster.
Lakers’ G/F Matt Ryan has made the team’s current opening night roster, as the team won’t waive him by today’s roster cut deadline, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium. Ryan shot 37.5 percent from 3-point land in preseason – including 20-point performance with six 3s last Sunday.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) October 15, 2022
In four preseason games with the Lakers, Ryan recorded 8.8 points per contest while knocking down 37.5 percent of his shots from beyond the arc.
His performance against the Golden State Warriors on Oct. 9 seemingly secured him a spot on the team. In that game, the 25-year-old recorded 20 points in 20 minutes of action. He made six of his nine attempts from 3-point range.
Following the game against the Warriors, Lakers head coach Darvin Ham all but guaranteed that Ryan would end up making the team’s opening night roster.
"He may have gotten himself a job today" – Darvin Ham said of Matt Ryan. Obviously, showcased his greatest skill
— Dan Woike (@DanWoikeSports) October 10, 2022
It’s a great story, as Ryan spent some time last season with the Boston Celtics on a two-way deal. Most of his time during the 2021-22 campaign was spent down in the G League, where he averaged 19.4 points, 3.4 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game on 41.3 percent shooting from downtown in 30 regular season games.
Ryan could end up playing a very pivotal role for the Lakers in the upcoming campaign. The team doesn’t really have elite shooters, and shooting seems to be Ryan’s best skill.
Following the game against the Warriors, Ryan offered a very thankful and confident message.
— Spectrum SportsNet (@SpectrumSN) October 10, 2022
“First couple games I was a little off,” Ryan said. “I was seeing a bunch of shots hit the back rim and go in and out. So, I knew I was shooting well, and I just needed to keep shooting, and one of these games it was going to click for me. It just took a couple games.
“I’m very fortunate and thankful to get another opportunity tonight after having a couple off games, but I know I can shoot with the best of them, and I’m gonna just keep getting better and staying ready for my opportunities.”
The New York native is just another youngster that the Lakers will have on their roster for this season. After having many veterans on their roster last season, the Lakers focused on getting younger this offseason.
They’re hoping that the influx of young talent and fresh faces can help the team get over the frustration and disappointment of last season.
Los Angeles will have to dig deep this season to make it to the playoffs, as there are many strong teams in the Western Conference.