The Los Angeles Lakers enter the offseason with the intention of improving the roster. The Lakers want to maximize the NBA title window behind LeBron James and Anthony Davis. All of this quickly guided the franchise to a specific skill set to pair alongside James and Davis.
The Lakers are a long way from claiming the NBA title
The Lakers entered last season for a second straight NBA title, a feat the franchise hasn’t accomplished in over a decade.
Los Angeles’ hopes of achieving this noble goal were quickly hampered by injuries as the team limped through the 2020-21 campaign. It featured Anthony Davis missing two months due to a calf injury linked to an Achilles problem. Meanwhile, James missed more than six weeks after suffering a sprained right ankle.
Both stars managed to return before the playoffs, but neither fully recovered from their ailments. Davis suffered a groin injury in Game 4 of the First Round Series against the Phoenix Suns, which put the nail in the coffin for the Lakers’ repeat chances.
As the organization ventures into the offseason, the front office has selected the desired addition to the list.
Lakers remain obsessed with adding specific skill set alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis
The Lakers’ shortcomings in the playoffs take the organization to a critical offseason where roster building will be the central focus.
The Lakers are increasingly expected to tackle the backcourt situation first due to inconsistent play last year, especially after injuries to James and Davis. In a recent newsletter, Marc Stein from The New York Times reported that Los Angeles is looking for another gaming player to partner alongside their stars.
“The word is that the Lakers, in addition to their well-known need for more shots, are coveting another playmaker who would make the difference that would allow James and Davis to spend more time up front and center,” Stein wrote.
The Lakers are considering another player who can create an offense to reduce the offensive workload on Davis and James. Los Angeles initially hoped Dennis Schroder could fit this bill, but his inconsistent play didn’t thrill the team. Reports have revealed that some within the organization were frustrated with his style of play.
Stein’s report only further underscores that the front office will explore options other than Schroder. This is certainly a fallback plan, but the team want to see what other backcourt talent is available. Players such as Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan and Spencer Dinwiddie fit the bill as each has already been linked with the organization in recent months.
Los Angeles has a clear game plan to make a concerted effort to rearrange the roster around James and Davis.
Los Angeles has several critical decisions on the upcoming list
As the Lakers navigate through the offseason, it will start with the team’s talent hitting free agency.
Los Angeles only have five players under contract until next season with James, Davis, Kyle Kuzma, Marc Gasol and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. Beyond that, the organization must determine who it appreciates enough to bring back into the fold with Schroder, Andre Drummond, Talen Horton-Tucker, Alex Caruso, Markieff Morris and Wesley Matthew venturing into the open market.
Front office decision making with this group will dictate how the team approaches the offseason. Early reports suggest Los Angeles will add shooting with a strong backcourt presence. The front office will strengthen the front court to prevent Davis from wearing too much.
The game plan is straightforward for the Lakers by focusing on building a roster of championship contenders around their star talent. Injury played a big role last season, but the team needs a solid support around James and Davis to get back to competing for an NBA title.
That said, expect the Lakers to be pretty busy restructuring the roster in the coming months.
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