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Breaking down the Lakers training camp roster

August 11th, 2017 at 4:43 PM
Aggregated By Sports Media 101

Media Day and Training Camp are just around the corner! As we all know, the Lakers are overwhelmed with young players, two of which are still teenagers, and are both expected to start for the Lakers to begin the season. The rest of the Lakers starting lineup will join Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram at Training Camp in just a few weeks.

The Starting Lineup

The projected Lakers starting lineup will be composed of rookie Lonzo Ball, defensive-minded 24-year old Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, 2nd year phenom Brandon Ingram, tenacious rebounder Julius Randle, and newly acquired Brook Lopez.

As most of you reading this know, Lonzo Ball was the 2nd overall pick in June, and was surely fun to watch in Summer League. Unfortunately, Lonzo didn’t compete in the Championship game due to a mild calf strain, but really impressed in the rest of the games he did play. Averaging 16.3 points, 9.3 assists, 7.7 rebounds, and 2.5 steals per game in Summer League, he was named the SL MVP.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope was drafted by the Detroit Pistons with the 8th pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, following two solid seasons at the University of Georgia. Over the past three seasons with Detroit, KCP has averaged 13.6 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 1.9 assists per game, while providing above average defense. KCP should thrive at the 2 spot with Lonzo Ball making things happen as the ball handler, but I’m also excited to see what he can do on defense as the lead defender.

Brandon Ingram was drafted 2nd overall in the 2016 NBA Draft, the 2nd of 3 Lakers #2 overall picks in a row. After a poor rookie season, can BI bounce back? Certainly. At only 19 years old, I’m not worried at all that Ingram shot 29% from long range, and only averaged 9 points per game. Ingram only played one game in Summer League in July, but he looked great. Look for him to add onto that.

Julius Randle is in an interesting spot this year. The Lakers front office has expressed how much they want to go after Paul George and Lebron James, and along with our forward of the future Brandon Ingram, where would there be room for Randle? Julius will be paid next summer, and IF somehow the Lakers can land one of two free agents, would the new husband be OK with taking a bench role? Would the Lakers be OK with paying Randle 100M to be a 6th man? Or do the Lakers pass on Randle and not match whatever someone else offers him? Tough situation.

Brook Lopez and his expiring contract came over from Brooklyn this summer in a trade for D’Angelo Russell and Timofey Mozgov, a trade that many (including myself) were not fond of. Brook Lopez should lead the Lakers in scoring, but his future past this season is in question, again with the Lakers looking to go after big name free agents.

The Bench – Guards

This is a spot where the Lakers are a little thin. A reason why I love that Caldwell-Pope signing is because I don’t know who else would start at SG. Clarkson? Hart? I’d rather have both of those guys off the bench, so a true SG who plays both offense and defense was big for me, personally. The Lakers are bringing in a few guards to training camp, as I’ll talk about later.

Jordan Clarkson is the most popular name on the bench. He was incredible (for a mid-2nd round pick) in the 2nd half of his rookie season, but from there, he hasn’t improved much. I think he can be a solid scorer, but his playmaking and defending kind of scare me, which is why I see him as strictly a 6th-7th man on a team.

I was a HUGE fan of Josh …

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