AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with Packers“Anytime you go through the journey I’ve been through so far in the league and then have an opportunity to play and have people welcome me with open arms, that’s something you want to stay with,” Ennis said. “Obviously there’s a lot going on, but if the opportunity to stay is there, they’ll definitely be at the top of the list.”Lakers president of basketball operations Magic Johnson and General Manager Rob Pelinka talked with Ennis during Thursday’s practice. But it would be a considerable stretch to say Ennis is near the top of their offseason to-do list. How the Lakers fare in the NBA draft lottery could dictate the future of Ennis – and others on the roster.The Suns drafted Ennis 18th overall in the 2014 NBA draft after he starred at Syracuse for for one season. After limited playing time with Phoenix (2014), Milwaukee (2015-16) and Houston (2016-17), Ennis has benefited from joining a rebuilding Lakers team intent on featuring young players late in the season.“They’re kind of a lot more patient with the mistakes,” Ennis said. “That’s another thing I look at – whatever has the best opportunity and wherever you’re wanted.”Lately, Lakers coach Luke Walton has wanted Ennis to take more open shots. “Confidence is a big part of having that success or not. He has the skill to do it,” said Walton, who also likes how Ennis runs the offense and plays team defense. “It’s up to us to encourage him and tell him he want him taking those shots when they’re appropriate.”It sounds like Walton tells him that often.“He pretty much gives me the freedom to make play-calls with me and the team,” Ennis said. “We obviously talk a lot during the game as far as what he sees. That’s more of what I’m used to coming from college. That’s why I’ve been able to be so comfortable.”Scaling backWalton could not resist cracking a joke about David Nwaba potentially playing eight consecutive days between stops with the Lakers and with the D-Fenders for their playoff run.“He’s young,” Walton said of the 24-year-old Nwaba. “People did it in AAU. Used to play eight games in two days.”Walton then turned serious, admittedly worried that a heavy workload on Wednesday in San Antonio (29 minutes) and against Rio Grande Valley (39 minutes) could take a toll. So, Nwaba sat in Friday’s game against Sacramento.“It’s our job to protect the players,” Walton said. “They should want to play every second that they can. But that’s what we have training staffs for and the sport scientists, it’s for this type of reason to make sure we don’t get them in a high probability of hurting themselves. We’ll do our best to make sure it doesn’t happen to David.”Mindful that Nwaba could potentially play every day up through the Lakers’ season finale against Golden State on Wednesday, Walton said he has consulted with D-Fenders president Joey Buss and D-Fenders coach Coby Karl on how they use Nwaba. “It’s pretty much on me,” Walton said. “They want him to help the D-League team win. But they do realize the opportunity he has right now is more important in being able to play in NBA games.”Still, Walton suggested he will be somewhat flexible. The Lakers will reassign Nwaba to the D-Fenders for Game 2 of their playoff series against Rio Grande Valley on Saturday, though his minutes are still to be determined.“We also have a lot of love for our D-League team,” Walton said. “He’s a big part of that success and want to make him available for playoff games as much as possible.”Moving onInstead of mulling over two great coaching positions, Lakers player development coach called it a “quick turnaround” in agreeing to become an assistant coach for the University of California.The reasons seemed understandable and obvious. After serving as a player development coach this season with the Lakers, Robertson will become the No. 2 assistant for Bears coach Wyking Jones. Robertson also has affection for his alma mater after helping the Bears to a 2010 Pac-10 title and remaining the program’s best all-time 3-point shooter (44 percent). “Everything about me is about trying to grow as a coach,” Robertson said. “It’s more responsibility and a more prominent leadership role. That’s important to continue to grow and develop into my coaching style and be in a position where I can lead more.”As for his role with the Lakers, Robertson contributed both with scouting responsibilities and working out with players. Though Robertson said he mostly worked with guards D’Angelo Russell and Jordan Clarkson, Robertson said that happened organically. “Luke wanted to establish a culture where really it was about our guys getting better,” Robertson said. “We don’t have a territorial approach to anything. I’ve worked with everyone on our roster.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error LOS ANGELES — Even before he logged a single minute on the court, Tyler Ennis experienced something with the Lakers he felt was lacking at the previous stops in his three NBA seasons.“One, being able to get on the court. Two, having the staff and players believe in me,” Ennis said. “That’s what has pushed me to be so comfortable so quick.”Going into Friday’s game against Sacramento, Ennis was averaging career-highs in points (7.1), shooting percentage (40.5) and minutes (15.5) through 18 games. Ennis also was coming off a career-high 19 points and six assists while starting for an injured D’Angelo Russell during Wednesday’s win in San Antonio.The Lakers acquired Ennis from Houston in exchange for Marcelo Huertas before the Feb. 23 trade deadline, and he’s hopeful the Lakers will retain him when he becomes an unrestricted free agent in July.