The Los Angeles Lakers held a mega media day ahead of the pre-season. Players spoke about their goals and preparations for the crucial 2023-24 season and made the winning intentions pretty clear. Well, after all, the team is riding high on confidence owing to their roster talent and depth, which GM Rob Pelinka worked hard on during the off-season.
The Lakers played smart by retaining the core of the new-look roster, as the unit looked balanced and strong at the same time. The lack of depth was taken care of during the free agency. However, as it stands, the team has yet to form an ideal starting lineup. The confusion concerns the point guard position for which D’Angelo Russell and Gabe Vincent are neck to neck.
D’Angelo Russell Ready To Work With Gabe Vincent Together!
Los Angeles Lakers signed Miami Heat’s star point guard Gabe Vincent in a three-year $33 million deal this off-season to extend the guard depth. Vincent played a key role in the Heat’s 2022 season’s successful campaign. He averaged 9.4 points, 2.1 rebounds, and 2.5 assists per game with a 33.4 percent shooting percentage from the deep to help the Heat reach the NBA finals. However, Vincent’s signing endangered Russell’s starting position. Rumors have been swirling around that Gabe could steal away the starting point guard job from DLo this coming season. However, Russell is not at all insecure with the speculations.
In a recent interview, D’Angelo Russell clarified that he has no rift with Gabe Vincent whatsoever. In fact, he loves Vincent’s game and is indeed a fan. The point guard is happy to have the ex-Heat guard on the team and certainly thinks that he can work alongside him. Having said that, Darvin Ham has a task up his sleeves to determine the better option between DLo and Vincent. Both are strong and talented. There is also a possibility of working these guys together in harmony by smartly managing their workload. Regardless, it’s a healthy headache for LA, considering how they suffered due to a lack of depth last season. The situation is much better and must be optimized with careful and sound planning.
Lakers Reach Consensus On Fifth Starter Choice?
Before the pre-season kicks off this weekend, the Los Angeles Lakers must decide on their fifth starter. The probable starting four are LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Austin Reaves, and D’Angelo Russell. Now, for the fifth spot, LA landed in a fix due to overflowing options. While Rui Hachimura remained a favorite choice, the purple and gold seem to have taken a different route altogether.
As per Lakers SBN, the Lakers played Jarred Vanderbilt as their fifth starter during the recently held training camp. Vanderbilt recently signed an extension contract, suggesting that the power forward is indeed in the team’s plans. Moreover, Jarred’s addition will bring more balance into the starting lineup as he is considered the best defender of the team after Anthony Davis. Having said that, it just seems like an experimental test for now. Nothing is confirmed from the club as of this writing.