Lakers News: Luke Walton Not Worried About Locking In Starting Lineup
Lakers Rumors: John Calipari An ‘intriguing’ Coaching Candidate For L.a.
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Make no mistake about it, the Los Angeles Lakers are a work in progress. With a solid core of inexperienced talent led by the youngest coach in the league in Luke Walton, it’s going to take some time before the end goal can be realized.

With that in mind, Walton has been using the preseason to experiment with different lineups. Most notably, he moved Jordan Clarkson, who started 79 games last season at guard, to the bench to work as the team’s sixth man. Walton also used an injury to starting small forward Luol Deng as an opportunity to audition veteran forwards Metta World Peace and Nick Young, with Young, in particular, showing well.

Still, Walton admitted to Tania Ganguli of the L.A. Times that things may not come together quickly:

“We have so much work to do, honestly, we’re going to take it as it comes. I know the goal is to be ready, ready by Game 1 of the NBA season, but we’re looking big picture. We’re going to keep going at whatever pace we need to go at […] we’ll go out and I expect us to still compete our tails off on both ends of the floor and play to win. It’ll be with a simpler playbook on offense, a simpler playbook on defense and we’ll kind of just take it as it comes.”

Walton’s comfort with not having a starting lineup or rotation set prior to opening night doesn’t indicate a lack of effort on his part. Instead, Walton is merely taking the appropriate amount of time before allowing players to settle into a role. Better to get it right the first time and avoid the struggle to overhaul everything midseason if things don’t work out.

Additionally, with the number of young players that Walton is coaching, he has to give them time to work through their nerves before he can get a feel for what they can provide. The Lakers are playing the long game here, with no false hope of a playoffs berth. Instead, finding the best way to develop the team’s young talent is the goal. With that in mind, Walton’s patience is a virtue, and hopefully, it will pay dividends down the road.

You May Also Like

Game Recap: Lakers Drop 3rd Straight Preseason Game With Loss To Raptors

The Los Angeles Lakers (0-2) looked to bounce back after dropping both…

Happy 37th Birthday Derek Fisher

Lakers captain Derek Fisher is celebrating his 37th birthday today. Born on…

Five Lakers Who Will Have to Step Up in Dwight Howard’s Absence

As many of you are well aware, Dwight Howard will likely miss…

Phil Jackson: Stranger Than Fiction

The year was 1987. In the city of Chicago there was a…