The Los Angeles Lakers held their first official day of mandatory individual workouts at the team’s practice facility on Wednesday, and while they did not explicitly state who did or didn’t participate because of privacy concerns, some of who were on hand soon became evident.
Alex Caruso spoke with media via Zoom following a workout, and the Lakers later shared photos and video of LeBron James and Anthony Davis also going through shooting routines at their UCLA Health Training Center in El Segundo, California.
Davis and James will of course be paramount to any success the Lakers have when the NBA season resumes at the end of the month, and the same can also be said about Caruso in the wake of Avery Bradley opting out of participating.
Although Caruso is hoping to continue playing a key role for the Lakers, he’s mindful of a collective approach that’s needed to replace Bradley. “This team has done a great job all year when guys have been out,” Caruso said.
“Stepping up and filling a role or need, whether it be LeBron missing a game or a guard being out for a couple games. I’m not sure if I’m going to be the sole provider for everything that Avery did. That’s a lot to ask just because of how good he is at what he does, but if nothing I’m going to be ready to fill that gap.”
Lakers head coach Frank Vogel echoed that sentiment. “Alex is an elite defender in his own right and in a different way than Avery,” he noted. “Offensively, in terms of what sets, clearly we wouldn’t run plays that Avery uses for Alex. We’d run plays that put Alex in the best position to succeed. We’ve got a lot of depth on this team.
“Avery Bradley not being with us will be a huge loss, but we’ve had a next-man-up mindset all year long and had success with it. It will be no different here. We will ask the players that are stepping up into those roles to be themselves and we will put them in position to be themselves.”
Meanwhile, Davis will look to pick back up with his campaign to win Defensive Player of the Year, and James can further add to the discussion for MVP.
The Lakers will travel to Walt Disney World on July 9, begin a full-scale training camp in Orlando, and tip off the season restart July 30 with a matchup against the L.A. Clippers.
Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!