The Lakers have started training camp with a lot of sameness, in the sense that their big stars are back (and will be in L.A. for a while going forward, based on this week's news), as are key names in the supporting cast. On the other hand... G.M. Rob Pelinka wasn't shy about mixing things up. So how concerned should the Lakers be about chemistry, given how critical it was for their success last year? It's just one topic of conversation with guest Trevor Lane, senior writer at LakersNation.com, and host of the Lakers Nation podcast.
From there, we each pick a player we're particularly interested in this season, and break that guy down.
Trevor takes Kyle Kuzma. Last year, he set very goals for himself, and in the most obvious ways (scoring, shooting) didn't get anywhere close to meeting them. On the other hand, Kuz improved his defense, paid more attention to playmaking, and did what was asked of him without complaint. But now, entering a season where he's looking for a contract and facing more competition in that third scorer role, how will he respond? Can he still be part of the long term plan?
Andy takes Dennis Schroder. Is this whole "I want to start" thing a problem? What role would actually be most valuable to him? Is it the one the Lakers need him to play? And in the end, given how badly the Lakers will need to retain him if he plays well, does it really matter if he's a starter or sixth man?
Brian focuses on Anthony Davis. How much space is there for him to make another leap this year? What happens if he does? And what, exactly, would that look like?