LeBron James hurt his groin on Christmas Day and Lonzo Ball isn’t wearing Big Baller Brand sneakers anymore.
Oh yeah: Carmelo Anthony and Zach Randolph never filled a roster spot in LA and Anthony Davis was never traded to the Los Angeles Lakers.
That was the soundtrack of the 2018-2019 Los Angeles Lakers season.
One person saw this coming: Kevin Garnett.
Before the season, I chatted with Garnett about a litany of things via my Scoop B Blog.
The Big Ticket and I discussed topical issues like Derrick Rose’s impact on the Minnesota Timberwolves this season.
KG told me that he’d start him.
One thing that got lost in translation via our chat that makes sense now is the Los Angeles Lakers and their All Star LeBron James.
I asked Garnett if the Lakers had enough firepower to get past the Golden State Warriors and win an NBA championship?
“I don’t know,” retired NBA vet, Garnett told the Scoop B Blog.
“I don’t know. I think we’re all going to see it and it’s going to be a learning lesson for the Lakers this year.”
The Lakers added Lance Stephenson, Michael Beasley and JaVale McGee to an already impressive young roster that includes Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma and Brandon Ingram. “As they start, they will get better and better,” said KG.
The Lakers are in a jam-packed NBA Western Conference that includes the Houston Rockets’ James Harden, Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony, Paul George Russell Westbrook and the competitive Oklahoma City Thunder, perennial All Star, Donovan Mitchell and the Utah Jazz and oh yeah…the Golden State Warriors.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, this summer, the Warriors shocked the world when they added DeMarcus Cousins to their already impressive roster that includes Kevin Durant, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green.
Do the Lakers have a snowball’s chance in heaven of beating the Warriors in a Western Conference playoffs series to potentially advance to the NBA Finals?
“They got the best player in the world,” Kevin Garnett said, referring to LeBron James.
“His influence causes everyone else to be better.”
Six months later: The Lakers are currently sitting at 33-41 and in 11th place in the NBA’s Western Conference and the Lakers won’t be making the NBA Playoffs this season.
And now? Come summer, the team may look completely different even with their head coach, Luke Walton.
“They put Luke [Walton] in position to fail,” NBA Hall of Famer, Charles Barkley told me.
“You can’t be in the middle, you got to be trying to develop those young guys or you got to be trying to win in the [NBA] playoffs. They put [Luke] in a bad situation and it’s unfortunate.”
Back in the fall, a person in the know shared with me that NBA Hall of Famer, Jason Kidd replacing Walton would be a good fit,
It “would be great,” they shared.
The person in the know points out that LeBron James and Jason Kidd have a great relationship.
“LeBron James always wanted to play with J-Kidd,” I’m told.
“This would probably be the next best thing to that.”
They told me: “it would be great” and “anything is possible.”
Earlier this month someone else shared that Kidd himself thought that becoming the next coach of the Los Angeles Lakers was ‘just rumors’ and that: ‘NBA language can mean anything.’
Kidd compiled a 139–152 record in his 291 games coached with the Milwaukee Bucks. He was fired last season. Before Milwaukee, Kidd led the Brooklyn Nets to a 44-38 record and a second-round appearance in the NBA Playoffs.
Mark Jackson has also been a person of Lakers interest for some time as reported by FS1’s Chris Broussard back in the fall.
Jackson comprised a 121-109 record as head coach of the Golden State Warriors before he was fired in 2014.
As for the Lakers: they purposely filled their roster with one-year contracts to maintain their salary cap flexibility for the summer of 2019 where several NBA superstars like Kevin Durant, Kawhi Leonard, Klay Thompson, Jimmy Butler, Kyrie Irving, Kemba Walker, DeMarcus Cousins, and DeAndre Jordan are expected to become unrestricted free agents.