NBA: Lakers' Russell makes case for more playing time

D'Angelo Russell of the Los Angeles Lakers shooting the ball against the Sacramento Kings.
D'Angelo Russell of the Los Angeles Lakers shooting the ball against the Sacramento Kings.PHOTO: AFP

(REUTERS) - Los Angeles Lakers' No. 2 overall pick D'Angelo Russell produced one of his better games of the season on Tuesday to heat up the debate about his playing time and development.

Russell scored 18 points to help the Lakers beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 119-115 and snap a 10-game losing streak.

Los Angeles coach Byron Scott has chosen to limit the 19-year-old guard's time, pulling him out of the starting line-up earlier this season, but some feel Russell should be earning as much experience as possible with the Lakers (10-41) struggling to be competitive.

Responding to comments by Clippers television announcer Don MacLean during a broadcast between the Clippers and Lakers on Friday, Scott said MacLean should not give up his day job.

"Well, first of all to Don, that's why you're not coaching. Let's put it that way," Scott told the Orange County Register this week.

"You don't let a guy go out there and just almost embarrass himself. My job is to help these guys develop, and that's what I'm doing."

Russell held his own on Tuesday against the Timberwolves and their No. 1 overall draft pick Karl-Anthony Towns had 14 points and nine rebounds.

Russell made 6-of-12 shots and added three assists in 28 minutes off the bench.