Since 2018, the Los Angeles Lakers have been making moves in their quest to win an NBA Championship.
It began two summers ago when the purple and gold signed LeBron James in free agency and continued last summer when they completed a blockbuster trade with the New Orleans Pelicans to acquire Anthony Davis.
This season, Davis is averaging 26.7 points, 9.4 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 1.5 steals and 2.4 blocks per game and James is averaging 25.7 points, 7.9 rebounds, 10.6 assists and 1.2 steals per contest.
In addition to Davis and James, the Lakers have added Dwight Howard, Dion Waiters, JR Smith, Danny Green, Markieff Morris, Avery Bradley, Jared Dudley, to their roster, hired Frank Vogel as their head coach and Jason Kidd and Phil Handy as their assistant coaches.
Currently the Lakers sit in first place in the NBA’s Western Conference with a 49-14 record
Million Dollar Question: What grade do the Lakers deserve for their roster upgrades? “I think it’s got to be like an A-plus,” says Fox Sports analyst, Jason McIntyre told me on this week’s episode of the Scoop B Radio Podcast.
“For LeBron, I don’t know how much credit you want to give LeBron vs. the front office. There were some issues with Frank Vogel; I think people questioned – he was a disaster. He had a good run in Indy you know like, 6 years ago and after that, not very good. But, for roster construction? I mean, Scoop from 1 to 10, who’s got a better roster than the Lakers? Maybe the Clippers. But I think LeBron and the front office has done a pretty did a good job – and I keep saying LeBron because it’s pretty clear, right? You talk to people around the league. You know how this works. If LeBron wants you on the team, there’s a good chance you’re going to get on the team! And I’m sure you’ve been all over the JR Smith stuff, you’ve been all over that. The Lakers basically don’t have a weakness.”
That’s high praise! But are there any weaknesses?
“If you want to nit pick you could say wing depth; to defend when the Clippers go Paul George, Kawhi, Lou Williams and if they go small with [Montrezl] Harrell at center, that’s a tough lineup for the Lakers especially with no Avery Bradley,” says McIntyre.
“You could see Alex Caruso playing huge pivotal minutes against you know, the second best team in the league, or what have you. The only reason I still give the Lakers an edge over the Clippers is, if you watched their final meeting, Lou Williams was in the flow in the 4th and LeBron just went matchup hunting. I mean, it was beautiful. Look it up on YouTube. Every possession LeBron says, “Ok, there’s Lou! Give me the screen!” and just go to work. And the Clippers could nothing. They were powerless. So I don’t know what Doc Rivers counter to that is…Scoop, you know that Lou Williams is a respected veteran in that locker room. He was there last year when they took two games from the Warriors. Everybody likes Low Williams; he’s been around for a long time. I can’t see them pushing him to the bench in crunch time minutes when he’s such a good scorer in favor of who – Landry Shamet? The Morris Twin who’s played there for only ten games with him maybe? So I just have questions on how they’re going to work that out and again, I think LeBron is the best player on the floor. I trust him more and Kawhi and Paul George and I’ll just toss out the point about Paul George that everybody loves – he hasn’t been out of the first round in I believe, six years.”