With injuries to both Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol, and the Los Angeles Lakers season going down the drain, the door opened up for former Louisville forward Earl Clark to step up and he did just that.
Clark recorded career highs 22 points and 13 rebounds in 27 1/2 minutes. He shot 9 for 12 from the field including a crucial three to cut into the San Antonio Spurs lead late in the game. Clark even had a chance to send the game into overtime with a three at the buzzer but was unable to connect.
This performance may earn Clark more playing time and a spot in the Lakers rotation, even when Howard and Gasol come back. Head coach, Mike D’Antoni, called his performance ‘phenomenal’. He also added that he has earned a look at a spot on the floor.
We all remember how good Clark was at Louisville and know how much potential he has. With his length and size he can be a real matchup problem for a lot of forwards in the NBA. I wouldnt be surprised to see him have a break out second half of the NBA season. If he can get his jump shot down consistently, the sky is the limit.
Clark was a first round draft pick in the 2009 NBA draft. This is his last year on contract with the Lakers so he may also be playing as a interview for another job next season.