What a difference a year makes. The Los Angeles Lakers were an absolute mess last season as they were marred by trade rumors and devastated with injuries. 2018-2019 ended with the team missing the playoffs and a very grim future. However, general manager Rob Pelinka pulled off a miracle and put together a team that is now leading the Western Conference and is one of the favorites to win the championship.
Though the Lakers don’t have the most talented roster in the NBA, the players fit together tremendously. Jared Dudley was one of the players the team brought in and he’s now claiming Los Angeles is having more fun than any other team.
It’s hard to argue as the team appears to get along very well.
Chemistry Over Trade
The trade deadline passed and the Lakers didn’t end up making any trades. Before the trade deadline arrived, NBA insider Shams Charania on The Hoops Hype Podcast shed some light as to why Los Angeles may not make a trade.
“I’ve been told that the chemistry on these Lakers is something to behold; these guys really get along on and off the floor,” Charania said.
Considering how it seemed like the Lakers team of last year couldn’t stand each other, that’s a pretty big statement from Charania. That said, there’s no denying it looks like the team is having a ton of fun and it’s paying huge dividends for them. Time will tell if the Lakers regret not making a move at the deadline, but when you factor in who was available and what it would’ve taken to get them, it’s easy to understand why the team didn’t pull the trigger on any deals.
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Good Chemistry Enough to Beat Clippers?
The biggest issue with the Lakers not making a deal is that they stood by while the Clippers added Marcus Morris. The other Los Angeles team was already stacked from top to bottom and they only improved at the deadline. Now, when it comes to chemistry, the Lakers have the Clippers beat. However, Kawhi Leonard is saving himself for the playoffs while Anthony Davis and LeBron James are working hard to win the West.
The two teams figure to match up with each other at some point come playoff time and while LeBron is a monster in the postseason, he’s also 35-years old and it remains to be seen how much he has left in the tank. Factor that with the fact that Davis has never had a deep playoff run and the Lakers should really worry about their Los Angeles rival. Luckily, the Lakers may have Darren Collison on the way and that would give their second unit a boost. The purple and gold do have a really good bench – it’s just not as strong as the Clippers’. It should be a matchup for the ages when the teams play each other in the playoffs. It’s a shame that they can’t play in the NBA Finals.