“Lakers-Purple & Gold-And-Lots New Pieces”
It’s opening night in the NBA as the Lakers open the season against Golden State.
The Lakers…the Big 3-and-12 new pieces and a burning question?
How do so many star players fit together when there is just one basketball on the floor and alot of guys who need the ball to do their thing?
It’s been two years since the linkage of LeBron James and Anthony Davis won the NBA title in 2019. A great team, overcoming injuries to come together.
In 2020 they lost, lost badly, to covid and the devastating injuries to Davis and the long stretch of time King James was out of the lineup with nagging injuries. That and bad chemistry, square parts, round holes and all.
Now they are back, coming off a weird (0-6) preseason, but believing they can throw the light switch on come opening night because they are vested veterans, who trust LeBron’s leadership and they are healthy.
But there are really strange questions we won’t find answered till they play a bunch of games together. Who fits what role, who gets to run the show on the floor, and can they all play their game, with just one ball on the floor?
LeBron is headed to the twilight of his career, dominant as ever.
AD can play two positions, but the trail of injuries he had in New Orleans continue to haunt him.
Enter the question marks, starting with Mr. Triple Double, Russell Westbrook. What gifts, what skill, what speed. But his successful run came to a crashing conclusion in Oklahoma City; his relationship in Houston with James Harden did not work out; and last year in Washington, amid the wreckage of injuries on that roster, led to him getting his numbers, but the Wizards not getting their wins.
Then there is Carmelo Anthony, he of Denver-NY Knicks fame, who has bounced around to places like Houston, Portland and other places. No doubts about his ability to shoot. But real doubts about his teamwork capacity, considering the ball goes into him and the offense stalls. Not the same player as before, but the same philosophy, ‘let me shoot’
That’s an interesting five man lineup.
Add to that the bench bunch, who knows how good this can be.
Talen-Horton Tucker..won’t start the season because of thumb surgery but a baller.
Dwight Howard…everyone needs talent off the bench, and he will give you 6-fouls to give, clog up the middle, get some baskets and rebounds ..Would have projected greatness in his career but it got lost along the way.
DeAndre Jordan..returns to LA with credentials of toughness on defense, rebounding phenom, limitations on offense but huge locker room guy…Might be the starter in the paint
Rajon Rondo…a glue guy, who has moved around alot, played last season across the hallway for the Clippers, and should be a trusted first guy off the bench player this season.
Trevor Ariza..grinder off the bench, but recovering from surgery so contributions may not come till December
Wayne Ellington..they need a stroker who can shoot-see how much playing time he garners.
Kent Bazemore…multi position guy who can provide grit on defense and can shoot-but been lots of places-let go lots of places
Kendrick Nunn..young guard with upside but injury issue
Malik Monk..stagnated with Charlotte but not that far removed from stardom in college..but nagging injuries in camp.
Austin Reaves…late roster addition in camp to learn the game
Gone are Kyle Kuzma among others dispatched in deals.
What kind of season, maybe (52-20) if no one breaks down, but this chemistry experiment will be fun to watch. I was never good in math, but 5-shooters into 1-basketball is a bit of a challenge, in long division and on the court.
We see what tonight and coming weeks and months bring.