It has been a rough few years for the Los Angeles Lakers with seemingly nothing going right for the team despite efforts to get back on the right track. The Lakers franchise is used to winning and competing for NBA titles on an annual basis, but trades, free-agent signings and rebuilding through the draft hasn’t gone as planned as of yet.
With the 2015-16 NBA season about two months away, ESPN has been making predictions about what may happen during the upcoming season. It comes as no surprise that the Lakers aren’t expected to make much of an impact next season and this ESPN Forecast has the storied franchise as a team that will be dealing with quite a bit of turmoil in potentially Kobe Bryant’s final season.
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) August 26, 2015
With Bryant more than likely calling it a career after his 20th season in the league, the future Hall of Famer will want to go out on a high note in a Lakers uniform. Bryant may ultimately end his basketball career with Team USA next summer in Rio de Janerio, Brazil by attempting to win another gold medal, but he’ll want to at least finish his stint with the Lakers with a playoff appearance.
As of right now, the Lakers chances of being playoff bound are slim to say the least. The Western Conference is as strong as ever and will be highly competitive once again. Los Angeles will need to be a force to be reckoned with right out of the gate next season in order to compete for a playoff spot.
If the Lakers can’t put it together with all the young players on the roster as well as the veterans added this summer, things could start to get ugly with Bryant and Coach Scott’s frustration potentially boiling to the surface. The team being ranked this high on ESPN’s Forecast for team turmoil isn’t all that surprising as there is bound to be some friction within the team during another potentially difficult season.[divide]