Former LeBron James teammate Channing Frye is not confident that the “old a–” Los Angeles Lakers will have enough in the tank to win the title.
Frye played with James with the Cleveland Cavaliers but thinks this current Lakers team is flawed. Not only does Frye think they are old, but he also doesn’t think there are enough balls to go around.
Frye and Richard Jefferson had fellow former NBAer and ESPN analyst Kendrick Perkins on their Road Trippin’ podcast to discuss the Lakers. Perkins has been a vocal supporter of the James’ Lakers but Frye disagrees with his assessment of the new-look purple and gold squad.
“I was listening to you. I don’t agree with you,” Frye said in response to Perkins’ prediction. “I love Bron. I love AD. I like Melo. I like Russell Westbrook. It is 2021. There’s not enough balls to go around. … In the playoffs, it’s a big ‘what-if’. This old a– team has to make it 82 games to the playoffs.”
Lakers Have Responded to ‘Old’ Chatter
The Lakers are well aware of their composition and that multiple key players — like James, Westbrook and Anthony — are in their 30s. All three have responded to the criticism that they’re too old to contend.
“Listen, we’ve got a team full of nice experienced vets that’s going to kick these young motherf—— a–es,” Westbrook said during an appearance on the Straight from the Hart” podcast with Kevin Hart. “That’s what we going to do.”
Anthony, 37, had a similar sentiment during his introductory press conference when the ages of the players on the roster were read to him.
“We don’t care,” Anthony told reporters. “We don’t care. We make our own narrative. … I like when people talk about the age. It gives a better story. I think it gives a better story. I think people forget, at the end of the day, it’s about basketball. You got to know how to play basketball. You got to have that experience. I think that’s what we bring at this point and time. Our talent, our skill, but also our experience.”
James hasn’t spoken publicly since free agency but published a now-deleted tweet that called out the Lakers’ haters.
“Keep talking about my squad, our personnel ages, the way he plays, he stays injured, we’re past our time in this league, etc etc etc,” James said. “Do me one favor PLEASE!!!! And I mean PLEASE!!! Keep that same narrative ENERGY when it begins! That’s all I ask.”
Marc Gasol Not Lock to Return to Lakers
Marc Gasol is one of the few players the Lakers are slated to bring back. Gasol has one year left on his deal and said he wants to play out that commitment. However, his future in LA might not be so cut and dry.
“I’m hearing that Marc Gasol is not a lock to return to the Lakers, even after Gasol said following Spain’s quarterfinal loss to the United States in the Olympics that he intends to play out the final year of the two-year deal he signed with Los Angeles,” veteran NBA insider Marc Stein reported this week. “It’s not yet clear if that means Gasol is poised to be set free to play elsewhere in the NBA or if he would ultimately opt to finish his career in his home country like brother Pau.”
Gasol will turn 37 next season and looked like he was slowing down at times last season. Gasol averaged just over 19 minutes per game with the Lakers last season, starting 42 of the 52 games he played in. However, his role on the team got very complicated once Andre Drummond was signed. Anthony Davis is expected to play more center next season and the team also brought back Dwight Howard.
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