Tarik Black of the Lakers Appears to Be Shrinking

By Kyle Koster

Tarik Black, the Los Angeles Lakers’ “big man,” is shrinking. After averaging 6 points, 5.8 rebounds and 0.4 blocks as an undrafted rookie with the Lakers and Rockets, Black has been demoted to a lesser height. While he played his rookie year at 6-foot-11, Black will enter his second year in the league a full two-inches shorter. This Rant Sports article from late December sums his problems:

"While scouting reports on his height vary from 6-foot-7, according to the Los Angeles Clippers measurements, to 6-foot-9 at the University of Memphis, to 6-foot-11 according to ESPN"

Black’s Basketball-Reference page still has him at 6-foot-11. ESPN and NBA.com have both updated their info. Kansas’ website has him listed at 6’9″, so what is the point of making him taller? If he spent half a season in Houston and they have him at 6’7″, he’s probably 6’7″. In this age of advanced stats and unlimited information, what’s the point? If Magic Johnson could be a 6’9″ point guard and Charles Barkley could be a 6’4″ power forward in the 80’s, why are players and teams still lying about heights in 2015 like teenagers getting their first driver’s license?