This is the beginning of the new era in Los Angeles. Kobe Bryant decided that it’s time to move on from basketball and Lakers are ready to rebuild without him and get back to the road of success. But, will that go smoothly. Most likely it won’t and their fans shouldn’t expect much from this 2016-2017 Lakers squad.
Luke Walton is now the man in charge. Yes, he was amazing with the Warriors while Ker was out and dealing with his back issues, but we need to have in mind that he did have Stephen Curry, Draymond Green, and Klay Thompson as his support.
This time around, he will see a much different roster. And much worse. D’Angelo Russell, Jordan Clarkson, Brandon Ingram and Julius Randle are all good players with bright future, but they still need to develop and become finished products. Jordan Clarkson is probably the best player of these four and that says a lot since he was their lowest draftee.
When you look at who they acquired, it’s not really impressive. Luol Deng and Timofey Mozgov are now overpaid and on the team. That won’t do it for the Lakers. They are nice veterans to have on the squad, but not on one that is trying to rebuild. Jose Calderon is also there. He can be great for Lakers’ young guards, but can’t really help them succeed in matches.
Besides Kobe Bryant, there are few more players that left including Brandon Bass. They just didn’t make the difference, and their absence won’t make the one either.
Russell and Clarkson will be their starting backcourt, with Deng, Randle, and Mozgov up front. Brandon Ingram will probably be stuck on the bench behind Deng to start the season. This makes us wonder why they signed him to that huge four-year deal.
They have won just 17 games during the 2016 campaign, and it was the worst season in the franchise history. We think they will win more than 17 games this season, but, in the end, they won’t come even close to the post season. Record of 22 wins to go with their 60 losses sounds about right for this 2016-2017 season. 22-60 is our final prediction.