I have been checking in on the Lakers this off season more then usual this time of year, because of the additions, but Primarily because everything is settled by now. The Gasol question is still the largest remaining one. Publicity Marc has said he intends to return. He has not made any statements about retirement. Yet we are supposed to be after DJ. It would make little sense carrying 3 traditional centers when our greatest remaining need is a wing defender with size. The interesting thing is DJ has cleared waivers but he is still unsigned and Marc is still on the roster. This is a crazy business and you never know what’s going to happen but it has always seemed unlikely that the Lakers would cut him for DK when they have Dwight. Marc offers a different skill set while DJ is pretty much Dwight lite. So are they waiting on Marc? Is there a trade in the works? Who knows but after such a great off season, I think it would be a huge error carrying 3 traditional centers. Beside if AD were to go down, LeBron is about the only guy on the roster that you could plug in at the small ball 5, which I’m not sure I like.
A lot has been made about Westbrook’s awkward fit but I’m not worried. This team is loaded with high IQ players so they will figure it out. I suspect both Russ and LeBron will both play more off the ball then they are use to but they will adapt.
I’m the most curious about the younger guys. We invested in THT and think that was a good thing. He showed a lot of on ball defensive ability last year, he just needs to clean up his rotations, which is typical of 20 year olds. Hopefully he can raise his 3 point shooting % as well. His stroke looked good hopefully it’s a confidence issue and that’s resolved. I don’t expect him to sky rocket to a 40%er in one off season but he can lift it to 35% this year that would be great.
Nunn is the guy that is really on my mind. Many pundits feel he may have been the steal of the free agency period. He is thought of as an under rated defender but because of his size he will probably be defending the point most of the time. I see him getting most of his minutes with LeBron playing the Avery Bradley role. Defending the point but a much better scorer. Unless he really under performs, I don’t think we will see much of Rondo. All the pundits from Picus, to the Spectrum Lakers crew to others I read believe Rondo won’t see many minutes. At least in the regular season. I agree with Jamie here, if Rondo plays a lot, something is terribly wrong. Either injuries or under performance.