The Los Angeles Lakers may have signed LeBron James and a few other veterans to help lead the roster, but most will tell you that if this team wants to contend for a championship, their young players will have to take a major step forward.
Thankfully for the Lakers, their young players understand this. Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma and Josh Hart all bring something different to the table, but they all have an outstanding work ethic.
“These young guys are focused. We see it,” JaVale McGee said following a recent practice. “They get here before us, so they know what can happen this year if we all are on the same page. They get it and they’re extremely focused also.”
One of the reasons the Lakers brought in the likes of McGee, Lance Stephenson and Rajon Rondo was to help teach and mentor the young core. Having veterans around to show them the right way to do things can go a long way, but McGee believes that people shouldn’t downplay the knowledge of this core.
“I don’t want to sit here and act like we’re just teaching the young guys everything and they don’t know anything,” he explained. “These young guys are very experienced and they work extremely hard. We’re just trying to fine-tune it.”
All four of these players as well as this year’s trio of rookies, Moritz Wagner, Svi Mykhailiuk, and Isaac Bonga, have potential to be outstanding players. Some are more ready to contribute than others, but the Lakers brought them all in for a reason.
The Lakers regime wanted to change the culture, bringing in players who are willing to put in the maximum amount of work to get better and these guys fit the bill as the new veterans are finding out.