Heading into the 2018-19 NBA season, LeBron James and Rajon Rondo will lead a Los Angeles Lakers roster that’s comprised of young players on the rise and tough veterans.
While there are questions about the new and different personalities in the locker room, head coach Luke Walton is personally embracing them, the depth, and opportunity to lead such a team.
As the Lakers have improved their depth and want competition at every position, one potential outcome is friction over playing time. However, with training camp fully underway, Walton has already seen the veterans having a positive impact on the young core.
“The first time I really noticed it was, we were doing a controlled scrimmage, and I kind of had younger players versus vets again, and LeBron and Rondo, on every single play, as soon as there was a stop in play, would talk out everything to their teammates; what to do and what’s coming up,” Walton said.
“And the young group was doing the same thing on the free throw line. You could see it starting to take place a little bit.”
For the first time in their young careers, Brandon Ingram, Josh Hart, Kyle Kuzma and Lonzo Ball are teaming up with two veterans who have played at the very highest level. James and Rondo have made multiple All-Star Game and NBA Finals appearances, and their experiences will only help the young core.
With the Lakers preparing for their 2018 NBA preseason opener against the Denver Nuggets, all eyes will be on the young core and if they can take the next step in their development.