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Los Angeles Lakers Feeling Golden?

How have the Lakers improved their team within a couple seasons?

Kevin York, Staff Reporter

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What Is Next For the Los Angeles Lakers?

             How Have the Lakers Improved Their Team Within a Couple Seasons?

In the 2017 NBA draft, the Los Angeles Lakers selected Lonzo Ball as their 2nd pick in the first round as expected. This was a good decision because Lonzo Ball was a good player in college when he played for UCLA, but would he be good in the NBA is what we are all wanting to know. Drafting Lonzo Ball was a good thing because in college Lonzo averaged 7.6 assists, 14.6 points and 1.8 blocks per game in his whole career in UCLA. Later on,  in the season, we found out he was a bust, now if you do not know what a bust is it is when a player has been drafted and plays awful, which means you wasted a draft pick or whatever you did to get that player. BUT he is still a good player for the Lakers. In the summer of 2018, all-star LeBron James signed a 153.3 4-year contract with the Lakers. That same week.

The Lakers picked up another good point guard, Rajon Rondo, a decent center, JaVale McGee and Lance Stephenson. LeBron James is the best addition that the Lakers have had in a while, arguably ever, because LeBron James is redundantly the GOAT ( greatest of all time). Some may think this because he has broken 2 scoring records, has 3 championships and has 9 championship appearances. Lance Stephenson is a mediocre shooting guard but did not get along with LeBron James. Lance Stephenson is known for getting in people’s heads and being a lockdown- defender. Rajon Rondo is an older point guard compared to other guards in the league but, is one of the smartest basketball players to play the game; he is known for his flashy passes, dribbling handles, and his basketball IQ. JaVale McGee is now a center for the Lakers and is known for his defense in the post and rebounding. The only thing that the Lakers did bad was trade D ‘ Angelo Russell and release Julius Randle, The Lakers traded Brook Lopez and a 27th round pick, They dropped Randle for more money.

I do not agree with dropping Randle because he was one of our best forwards on the team, but I understand why we dropped both of them- we obviously did it to make more salary cap space. This matters because when too much money is being taken up on one player and every team has a salary limit and the Lakers just used too much money on Randle so they dropped him to have more money to sign more valuable players.

Lakers Competition?

In the Eastern Conference, the Lakers only threats are the Boston Celtics. The Celtics shooting would wear us out by their shooting and it is not that good. The Celtics point guard, shooting guard, small forward, and their center would outshoot the Lakers.  However, the Lakers would probably contest more than 50 percent of those shots and get boards (Rebound when a ball reflects off the goal and a player jumps and grabs it) over the Celtics. The Lakers main competition in the Western Conference would be The Warriors and The Rockets. The Warriors have an all-star team and their starting lineup is all all-star players. The Rockets would outshoot the Lakers but, the Lakers would again, out-rebound them and contest a lot of those shots; however, the Rockets also have a good driving ability. Small threats to the Lakers in the Western Conference would be (The thunder, spurs, Timberwolves and the Pelicans).

I am not really worried about the Thunder because the past couple of years they have just been getting knocked out in the first round. The Spurs lost their best player that helped them offensively and defensively, and the majority of their players are older. The Timberwolves are going to release their starting shooting guard to free agency which will really hurt their team defensively this would hurt them because Jimmy Butler is one of the best defenders in the league and one of the best shooting guards in the league, he averages 3 steals and 1.8 blocks per game. The Pelicans lost their all-star center Demarcus Cousins who is in the top 5 centers in the current league.

                             

The most exciting or best part about the Lakers is  their team management and who they pick up, how much money they are getting and how much they have improved in the game.”

— Jay T Huff

        What’s the Hype about the Lakers?

The last time the Lakers won the championship was in 2008-2009, and the Lakers accumulating in 16 total championships which is the 2nd most in history. The hype about this year’s Laker team is, if they win this year, they will tie their rival with 17 championships, and the Lakers have not made the playoffs in a while which is exciting because they could make it to the championship and win. The Lakers have had legends for a long time, including Kobe Bryant, Magic Johnson, Shaquille O’Neal and many more, but once Kobe retired, the Lakers were not too sure how they would do, until they picked up LeBron James.

My favorite moment in Laker history is actually pretty recent when a few days when Chris Paul and Rajon Rondo were fighting because I know that these two men dislike each other and they fight all the time and out of all those times, this was the biggest between the two, also they are both two very competitive point guards.”

— Steven Reed (9)

What’s in the Future for LA and What Happened in the Past?

The whole Lakers franchise has been full of ups and downs, with success legends retiring, injuries, and championships. Just one example would be, when the Lakers were playing the Spurs in the playoffs, Tim Duncan hit a fadeaway shot and made it with 0.4 seconds on the clock, and Derek Fisher hit a deep 3 with 0.4 on the clock to win the game. We have all seen the greatest players come and go, like Ervin Magic Johnson, Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O’Neal, Kareem Abdul- Jabbar and several more. The Lakers are the second team in the NBA with the most national championships won, 1 win behind the Celtics. This season is not looking good for LeBron; LeBron has not had a 0-3 start since 2004, which was his rookie year, but he has a 57 percent chance of making the finals compared to other years he has made it. If he does not make the finals with the Lakers then Laker fans will dislike him, which could make him move and that would, not only, hurt his legacy but the Lakers team as well.

 

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