The Los Angeles Lakers grabbed the spotlight in the offseason when they made big-name additions in Russell Westbrook, Carmelo Anthony and DeAndre Jordan.
With the three veterans joining the superstar LeBron James-Anthony Davis duo, the Lakers boast a team with a record seven All-Stars on the team, who share 57 All-Star appearances among them.
Although the coaching staff is likely to cherish the roster’s depth, it can become tricky for head coach Frank Vogel to figure out a rotation that will play to the team’s strengths while keeping all the acclaimed players happy. Among the main challenges, Vogel needs to pick his starting line-up — a task all the more difficult following Trevor Ariza’s knee injury.
But Anthony hopes the head coach will show his hand before the new season’s tip-off on Oct. 19, although his job remains unchanged regardless of if he’s starting or coming off the bench. “Yeah, you just got to be willing to adapt,” he said.
“I think by the time Game 1 is here, we will know, like I will know, everybody will know kind of what their situation is, what their role is. Right now, we just play. I don’t know. But I know what I have to do. I don’t know whether I’m starting or coming off the bench, but I know what I have to do.”
Since his debut season in 2003, Anthony started every game he had played until signing with the Houston Rockets 15 years later.
The 37-year-old forward said that there’s value in having a well-established starting unit. “I think so. For some people, some people they need it, some people they don’t,” Anthony said.
“You just got to be ready for when they call your number, you got to be ready. But for me, it’s kind of hard to think about that at this point.”
Anthony has started two games for the Lakers in the preseason, the 117-105 loss to the Phoenix Suns and the 111-99 defeat by the Golden State Warriors.
A lot of it will come down to if Vogel decides to start Davis at power forward or center. If it’s the later, then Jordan would likely start while Anthony would start in the latter scenario.
Anthony remains optimistic despite preseason losing streak
The Lakers have yet to come together as a team after a massive roster overhaul that saw 14 new players joining James, Davis and Talen Horton-Tucker at Staples Center. The abundance of personnel changes — as well as the early injury wave that blindsided L.A. — contributed to the poor preseason results.
But Anthony thinks the Lakers will become a well-oiled machine sooner rather than later.
“I don’t know exactly what teams, but if you just look at the course of an NBA season and the teams that have won championships, unless you were the Warriors when they were [73-9], everybody had to figure it out,” he said.
“I think we’ll figure it out much quicker than people giving us credit for, but that’s on us, that’s something that we take that challenge, that’s something we know, something we talk about even though it’s preseason and we lost some games.”
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