As they enter an important string of games, the Los Angeles Lakers will now be without either of their two superstars. Anthony Davis is still some time away from returning due to his calf injury, while LeBron James could need several weeks to recover from a high ankle sprain.
Lakers head coach Frank Vogel now has some decisions to make, completely reshaping the rotation in the middle of a season.
In the Lakers’ first game of James’ extended absence, they lost by 17 to the Phoenix Suns. However, they had incredible effort and kept it close for most of the game. This was mainly thanks to Dennis Schroder and Montrezl Harrell, who both had incredible games.
Vogel, when asked who would take the leadership role with the two stars out, said Schroder will be the spearhead among several leaders.
“We have multiple leaders,” Vogel said. “We want our guys to lead from every chair in the room. That’s what we’re going to look like. Obviously, Dennis Schroder is the head of the snake with the ball in his hands the most dictating some of the action.
“We’ve got a lot of veteran guys on this team and we encourage our guys to lead from every chair in the room.”
On the court, Schroder likely will take on the leadership role as the primary ball-handler. He’s no stranger to controlling a game with his ability to drive to the lane and find open teammates, so he shouldn’t struggle there.
Off the court, it will be a huge team effort. Schroder will be involved, but it could also be Harrell, Kyle Kuzma, Wesley Matthews, Marc Gasol or almost anyone in the main rotation. Perhaps this will improve chemistry and help everyone get comfortable before James and Davis return.
Talen Horton-Tucker thinks ‘everybody’ will pitch in to lead
Lakers second-year player Talen Horton-Tucker, while not in a position to be a vocal leader, believes that it will be a complete team effort. He said that leadership will come from everywhere and that everyone will need to pitch in.
“I just feel like with those two guys out, I feel like everybody is getting more involved, getting more vocal. So just with out two guys out, I feel like everybody had to pitch in to make up for those two voices.”
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