By Matt Moses, Staff Writer—
The Los Angeles Lakers have made significant changes to their roster in the 2018-2019 offseason—acquiring league vets like Rajon Rondo, JaVale McGee, Lance Stephenson, Michael Beasley, and Tyson Chandler. Oh, and they added the best player in the world in Lebron James as well—making the Lakers a title contender in the western conference.
Lakers Head Coach, Luke Walton and General Manager Magic Johnson, have created a whole new organization in which winning championships has once again become the main goal. The signing of Lebron James in this summer’s free agency was not only Magic’s top priority, but also every team in the NBA’s for that matter. However, the Lakers and the city of Los Angeles had been preparing for Lebron ever since Magic Johnson stepped out of Lakers lore and back into the front office.
The Lakers had drafted well in the past years and had stockpiled picks from several other teams by trading off veteran talent. With the drafting of Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kazuma, Brandon Ingram, Josh Hart, and several other top tier rookies the Lakers have been cherry picking the most talented prospects that College Basketball has to offer. All of the young stallions in Magic Johnsons stables have contracts will be under 5 million dollars until 2021. Which opened the door for three max deals for superstars like Lebron James to come to LA and begin a new era of “Show Time” basketball that’s been absent for the better part of the last decade.
The allure of Los Angeles’s business ventures and promising crop of talent were too much to keep Lebron James away. He signed a 5 year, 141/Million-dollar contract and immediately made an impact on every aspect of the franchise. The Lakers immediately signed key free agents like Lance Stephenson, who had recently revitalized his career once again in Indiana. Then they signed, NBA champion center JaVale McGee who had decided to opt out of his previous contract with the Golden State Warriors. Rajon Rondo, Michael Beasley, and Tyson Chandler (acquired from Phoenix in season trade) all of which are under one-year contracts. The roster, as many Lebron James teams are, is centered around playmaking and experience. Except, the teams in which James had in Cleveland did not have the young the talent of the Lakers.
This is truly new territory for Lebron James and the NBA, but as the season has gone along the Lakers have meshed well and proven to be a title contending team. The Lakers defense ranks 10thin the NBA in efficiency as well as blocks and steals per game. Their offense averages just under 113.5 points per game and is shooting 36 percent from three.
With all of the championship changes the Lakers have made the number one question for this historic franchise will not be what they can achieve, but when will they achieve. Time is the only thing standing in between Lebron and the Lakers hanging more banners. LA still has another max deal roster spot open for next year’s key free agency which will include coveted stars like Kevin Durant and Anthony Davis. The future and culture of the city of Los Angeles is as bright as it’s ever been looks to stay that way until it outshines the rest of the league.