One of the biggest concerns for the Los Angeles Lakers heading into the regular season is their shooting. The team ranked 29th in the league in three-point shooting with no one hitting over 40 percent from deep.
Not to mention none of the Lakers’ signings in free agency are particularly known for their marksmanship behind the arc. One of the Lakers who will be relied on most for shooting is Kentavious Caldwell-Pope.
“I definitely take it personal, and I think my team should as well,” Caldwell-Pope said during Lakers Media Day when asked if he is bothered by criticism of the team’s shooting.
“I mean, we had great guys that can shoot the ball: Kyle, Josh Hart, myself, B.I. started knocking down threes. We had pieces that could knock down threes. But, that wasn’t our game and we weren’t looking for that.”
Caldwell-Pope shot 38.3 percent from deep last season and was especially effective after he moved on from legal troubles. His explanation of the Lakers’ focus carries weight, as head coach Luke Walton wanted the team to play fast and find the best shot, whether it was a three-pointer or something else.
The Lakers also do have some promising shooters who could take a step forward. Josh Hart led the team in three-point percentage last year at 39.6 percent and he seems poised to take a step forward.
Likewise, Kyle Kuzma and Brandon Ingram could benefit from improved looks, and Lonzo Ball has a chance to take a huge leap forward with the alterations he’s made to his jumper.
If Caldwell-Pope and the rest of the Lakers take the critiques as a challenge, it could further fuel a team that’s been questioned because of the personalities on the roster. Above all else, there’s confidence within the organization.