Gabe Vincent Praises Lakers’ Defensive Personnel, Believing It Will Give Him Confidence
Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers finished the 2022-23 season as one of the league’s elite defenses. Adding Jarred Vanderbilt and Rui Hachimura at the trade deadline helped to overhaul their defensive approach, adding more true wings with length and speed into the rotation.

Now, with the addition of Gabe Vincent from the Miami Heat in the offseason, the Lakers once again figure to be towards the top of the defensive rankings. L.A.’s defense will once again be anchored by perennial All-NBA Defensive center Anthony Davis, but players like Vincent, Vanderbilt, Austin Reaves and LeBron James figure to play pivotal roles.

Vincent spoke about the Lakers defense and mentioned how their recent success in being a top defense was a draw to him in free agency and should allow him to play more freely, via The Old Man and the Three podcast:

“Yeah I mean, just with their size and length, they seem to always be a top five defensive team every year. It’s not something I would look at in years prior and be like stamp it, top five. But over the last 4-5 years, they just seem to be up there and they seem to find ways to be disruptive. Their length and athleticism makes up for a lot, so being able to get to the ball a little more and having more length behind me is I’m sure going to give me some confidence.”

Vincent has a very similar defensive profile to Dennis Schroder, who Lakers fans have gotten used to seeing as a perimeter anchor over two of the last three seasons. Vincent’s ability to hound the ball and make life difficult for opposing guards is a huge benefit for L.A.

And like Vincent says, he’ll be able to take even more risks and be even scrappier when facing opposing guards because he knows he has length and athleticism behind him to help cover up any miscues.

Vincent should be an exciting addition to the Lakers defense, especially with a well-balanced and long roster full of great defensive players.

Jaxson Hayes could start alongside Davis

The Lakers may reportedly opt to add even more length to their starting lineup by floating out a potential Davis-Jaxson Hayes frontcourt at the start of the season. L.A. is obviously going to keep their actual lineups close to the vests, but reports state that they’ve been toying with the two-big model.

It remains to be seen if that becomes a permanent option or simply an experiment.

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