Is anyone else confused with the Los Angeles Lakers’ offseason moves?
The Lakers are off to another questionable start. First, the loss of Jodie Meeks.
Meeks was arguably the only dynamic offensive threat for the Lakers. With the exception of the occasional Nick Young sighting, it was all Meeks. He was the best shooter on the court, the most efficient scorer, and he was a plus in nearly every category. The total opposite of the player he replaced, Bryant, Meeks turned the ball over only 1.4 times a game and put up disgustingly good statistics for a tanking team.
Second, the loss of Pau Gasol. Gasol was probably a long-shot to stay a Laker as the cap space would ultimately determine that decision, but the necessity to keep the versatile big man was clearly in the plans. Instead, draft pick Julius Randle will learn on the fly and should play meaningful minutes from the start.
To couple for the loss of Gasol, the Lakers’ only big man threat last season (and the only threat since Andrew Bynum), they brought in Carlos Boozer for a very cheap $3.25 million. It’s a smart business buy; replace big man with cheaper big man. Boozer can still play, but that hardly matters for a team with as many holes.
It looks like another rebuilding year for the Lakers. But instead of going for youthful building blocks and focusing the team on players like Randle, Kendall Marshall, or Jordan Hill, the Lakers will go with old hurdles. In addition to Kobe Bryant‘s presence in the lineup, there’s “journeyman” point guard Jeremy Lin (only 25, but not a franchise point guard), Boozer, and Steve Nash.
Unless the Lakers drastically change their starting lineup or play the young guns more, this will be a confusing season for Lakers’ fans everywhere. Develop the talent in Randle, Marshall, and Hill and give the hope back to the best bandwagon fan base.
Photo Credit: Getty Images/Andrew D. Bernstein
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