The Los Angeles Lakers have a seriously promising, deep, and balanced roster. That’s a good reason why the fans and the experts consider them as a favorite to win the title this season. But the LA side is not yet certain what the starting lineup will look like. Perhaps they would have preferred Jarred Vanderbilt as a starter. However, to the utter shock of the fans, Vanderbilt will stay out for another two weeks. That is what the doctors suggested. However, that does not mean Jarred Vanderbilt will be match-ready once the two weeks’ rest is over.
Anyhow, against the Denver Nuggets and the Phoenix Suns, the Lakers gave Taurean Prince a chance to be in the starting lineup in the regular season. Can Prince be a viable option for the Lakers to replace Vando as a starter? Obviously, there will be LeBron James and Anthony Davis in the starting lineup. There will be Austin Reaves and D’Angelo Russell as well in the starting lineup as shooting and point guards, respectively. But Jovan Buha of The Athletics mentioned the Lakers might be seriously considering Taurean Prince as a starter.
The Lakers Might Give Taurean Prince A Place In The Starting Lineup
According to Jovan Buha, Taurean Prince is a much better shooter than both Jarred Vanderbilt and Rui Hachimura. It must be an essential weapon for the Lakers at their frontcourt alongside the James-Davis duo. Last two seasons, Prince played for the Minnesota Timberwolves. Later, the LA Lakers signed him in the offseason for a one-year deal worth $4.5 million in July. In the 2022-23 season, Taurean Prince played in 54 games for the Timberwolves. However, he started only in four games last season for the Minnesota franchise.
Since the 2019-20 season, Prince has not been a full-time starter. Moreover, Taurean Prince has an average of 9.1 points, 1.6 assists, and 2.4 rebounds. On top of that, Prince shot 46.7% from the floor and 38.1% from the deep. Despite the quality talent of Taurean Prince being a starter, it is too hard to ignore the promising talent of Rui Hachimura. Moreover, the Japanese sensation helped the Lakers reach the conference finals last season. Nevertheless, Taurean Prince is a solid candidate to play alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
How Critical Is Jarred Vanderbilt’s Heel Injury?
Vando apparently hurt his heel during the preseason opener against the Golden State Warriors. Initially, it looked like just a soreness that should not take much time to recover. But later, the doctors called it “Heel bursitis.” As per the term, it means there will be inflammation in the heavily used joints.
Hence, Vando’s injury is pretty serious, and it won’t heal as soon as the Lakers Faithful would want them to. It is a pretty big blow to the Lakers planning for the regular season. Already, Vanderbilt missed the first two games of the regular season. He might miss seven more in the next two weeks. Moreover, after hurting his heel against the Warriors, he was not able to play many preseason games either.