The Los Angeles Lakers have added a fresh face to the roster, as they officially signed center Andre Drummond once he cleared waivers after a buyout with the Cleveland Cavaliers.
The signing comes at an adequate time for Los Angeles. After facing — and defeating — two of the lower-tier teams in the Eastern Conference, the looming schedule is clogged with quality opponents in the Milwaukee Bucks, the resurging Sacramento Kings, L.A. Clippers and more.
The Lakers could definitely benefit from an experienced presence down low. Despite Marc Gasol and Montrezl Harrell fulfilling their roles, L.A. needs additional depth and more versatility with their offensive options.
Point guard Dennis Schroder — who is averaging 17.6 points and 6.8 assists in the last five games — explained what Drummond’s potential impact will be on both sides of the ball.
“He’s gonna definitely put a lot of pressure on the rim so looking forward to it, setting those screens and giving us a couple of offensive rebounds, extra possessions,” Schroder said. “On the defensive end, he’s gonna change a lot of shots or block the shots so we’re looking forward to having him for sure.”
It will be interesting to see how fast Drummond acclimates to life with the Lakers. Los Angeles has two days off before their next contest, so there’s extra leeway for Drummond to familiarize himself with the playbook and with his teammates.
L.A. hasn’t received two days off in a while, but it arrives at an optimal time for their new signing. Schroder discussed how adding Drummond during the middle of the season will play out.
“Chemistry-wise, I don’t think it’s gonna be a problem,” Schroder said. “I came here, it’s my first year and how the guys treated me and how they got me in right away, I’ve never had that before. So that side, I don’t have no worries. But I think we’ll get in, we’ve got practice and everybody commits to the same thing.
“Andre Drummond, he’s been in the league and he knows what he does good so he’s gonna bring whatever he brings to the table and does a great job of it. We’re gonna tell him what he needs to do and we’ll all be on the same page, get straight to work.”
Schroder added how the Lakers will look to create a rhythm with Drummond during their rare two-day break.
“It’s gonna feel good for sure those two days,” Schroder said. “I don’t even remember when’s the last time we had two days off. But it’s gonna feel good, we’re gonna get our rest, we’re gonna practice probably one time and we’ll look forward to doing it with Andre Drummond and get everybody on the same page, just finding our chemistry. Try to adapt him right into our system and get him right for the games.”
Vogel ‘thrilled’ to add Drummond to Lakers; unsure of availability moving forward
The acquisition of Drummond has many excited given what the 27-year-old center has produced throughout his career. Lakers head coach Frank Vogel is no exception to that excitement, as Drummond supplies Vogel more options to score on offense while being a big body to defend the paint.
Vogel explained how ecstatic L.A. is to add someone of Drummond’s skillset.
“We’re thrilled,” Vogel said. “We’re all thrilled that (to add) Andre Drummond, a player of his caliber, to our team. He’s one of the best centers in the league. Someone that every defensive coordinator is going to have to account for and figure out how to handle him while they’re trying to slow down AD and Bron and our guards.”
However, Vogel isn’t entirely sure when the big man will make his first appearance in a Lakers uniform.
“We don’t know his availability yet,” Vogel said.
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