D'Angelo Russell, the No. 2 pick in the 2015 NBA Draft by the Los Angeles Lakers and former Ohio State star, had some interesting comments about some of his former teammates in Columbus published Tuesday in a feature story with Bleacher Report.
Russell said he was surprised at the work ethic — or apparent lack thereof — of some of the "top guys on the team."
From part of the Bleacher Report feature on Russell:
"I started realizing a lot of people didn't work," Russell said in an interview with Bleacher Report. "A lot of God-given talent, a lot of athleticism separated 'em, but it wasn't really work ethic there."
"I'm like, 'We're not in here every night?' I would come and be the only guy there," Russell said. "Or it'd be me and another player who didn't really play a lot but was a gym rat. Kam Williams. I always used to want him to play with me because he made shots. [H]e loved the game...and he's killin' it this year.
"[But] I noticed a lot of the top guys on the team, they weren't in the gym working as hard as I was. ... That's when I started losing respect for people's opinions who didn't work."
During Russell's one season with the Buckeyes, the roster was made up entirely of seniors and freshmen, with only one player in between — sophomore Marc Loving.
This appears to be somewhat of a shot at those upperclassmen Russell played with: Shannon Scott, Sam Thompson, Amir Williams and Trey McDonald — four players who many felt failed to develop throughout their four-year careers at Ohio State despite coming in as a highly-touted recruiting class.
Russell, who has never shied away from speaking his mind, is averaging 13.4 points, 3.5 assists and 3.5 rebounds per game this season as a rookie for the Lakers. During his lone season with the Buckeyes, Russell averaged 19.3 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.0 assists and was named a first-team All-American and the Big Ten Freshman of the Year.