It has been almost 10 years since the Los Angeles Lakers last won an NBA Championship. Former Laker Metta World Peace [Ron Artest], who was a member of the last Lakers team to celebrate a championship in the city of Angels recently spoke about the current team.
The 2003-04 Defensive Player of the Year, was interviewed by TMZ Sports and asked his thoughts on the Lakers season to this point.
“I think they’re bigger than us to tell you the truth, “World Peace said. “They’re 24-6 at this point? They’re bigger than what we were at this point in the season.”
That’s high praise considering the 2010 season ended with a championship parade down Figueroa Street in downtown Los Angeles.
The Lakers are currently 24-7 after the loss to the Clippers on Christmas, and the 2010 team was 24-6 at this point of the season.
For what it’s worth, World Peace did reveal that he believed the Lakers will be celebrating again with the trophy at the end of the season.
During his 17 seasons in the NBA, World Peace averaged 13.2 points, 4.5 rebounds and 2.7 assists in 991 games played.
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Another Ex-Lakers is Just Waiting for the Lakers Championship Parade
Earlier this month, after a 101-96 victory over the Atlanta Hawks on the road, two-time NBA champion Lamar Odom shared with Fanatics View, “I’m getting ready for the parade already.”
Odom was a key player for the Lakers during their championship runs against the Boston Celtics and the Orlando Magic. He averaged 12.6 points, roughly 9.3 rebounds, and 3.2 assists per game with the Lakers during those two seasons. Over the seven years he spent with the Lakers, Odom averaged 13.7 points, 9.5 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game.
Lakers General Manager Rob Pelinka Is Interested in Upgrading the Roster
According to Joe Vardon of The Athletic, general manager Rob Pelinka is looking to upgrade the current roster in the form of another ball-handler and scorer.
The Lakers need a legitimate third scorer, ball-handling help and outside shooting. Kuzma is 24, under contract for $3.6 million next season and, as he showed on Christmas, has a potentially huge upside. He is the young player teams would want if the Lakers pursue a major upgrade come February. The Lakers’ other chief potential trade chip is Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, who makes $8.1 million this season with a player option for $8.5 million next year. But he would have to approve a trade. Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka is interested in upgrading his team, but activity likely won’t come until closer to the deadline.
The players that have been mentioned in connection to the Lakers this season are headlined by Andre Iguodala, who they would likely have to trade for since the Memphis Grizzlies appear unlikely to buy out his contract. Other options are Jeff Green, who was just waived by the Utah Jazz after 29 games this season, along with Jamal Crawford, J.R. Smith, and Iman Shumpert, who are all free-agents. While the likes of Robert Covington, Derrick Rose and Jeff Teague would need to be acquired via trade.