The Los Angeles Lakers have made various moves in the first several days of free agency with the addition of a few proven veterans to the mix.
This has created much buzz around how it could impact the starting lineup for next season. During an interview on Spectrum SportsNet’s “Connected With,” general manager Rob Pelinka revealed that each of the other four starting spots around All-Star forward LeBron James are up for grabs in training camp. (h/t Mike Trudell of Lakers.com)
Once you get a commitment from LeBron James, an open dialogue begins, and one point in those discussions that was made that was powerful to Magic and I and something we’d talked a lot about is all of a sudden we’re vaulted into a playoff team. In a moment’s time. The playoffs is a game of centimeters. So to get guys that have experience in the playoffs, in those moments to make the winning play was essential.” He went on to describe how Luke Walton has decided to have an “incredibly competitive” training camp where all the spots are going to be open, aside from LeBron James. “The four other starters are going to be the starters who will help us win the most games. Players are going to be held accountable and we’re going to be prepared.”
The bulk of this attention has shifted over to the point guard position that saw the notable addition of Rajon Rondo on a one-year, $9 million deal that has put into question second-year point guard Lonzo Ball‘s status with the franchise. Rondo had initially downplayed the possible battle for the starting spot, but this at least brings forth the chance for him to work his way into the starting lineup.
Meanwhile, this could see some a heated competition between Brandon Ingram and Kyle Kuzma at the other starting forward position alongside James. Each has shown to have promising talent that could develop into high-impact offensive players in a significant capacity on the floor. The same could be said at the shooting guard spot with Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Lance Stephenson, and Josh Hart.
If anything, this can be used as a ploy to help create more of an intense atmosphere to help push the team to greater heights on the court next season.