The jokes about the Los Angeles Lakers’ roster have been constant since their roster has come together this NBA offseason. The front office clearly valued experience and veteran players for the most part when adding to the team, which has led many to wonder if the Lakers are too old to win a championship.
Of the 13 players currently on guaranteed contracts, nine are at least 32 years. Furthermore, LeBron James, Trevor Ariza, Carmelo Anthony, Dwight Howard, Rajon Rondo, and Marc Gasol are all at least 35 years old. The team itself continues to insist that the age of the roster doesn’t bother them, but that hasn’t stopped the jokes from coming from the outside.
One of those shots taken at the Lakers came from an NBA executive. In an episode of The HoopsHype Podcast, Michael Scotto says that an executive referred to the Lakers as the LAARP:
DeAndre Jordan’s been linked there. I was texting with an Eastern Conference executive about it. The executive texted me, “I hope the Nets buy him out so he can join the Lakers’ AARP squad. Better yet, the LAARP. I’ve never seen a roster like this.”
Admittedly, this joke is one of the more creative ones and is likely to stick around for the near future. As long as the Lakers have a roster built in this way, these jokes are sure to follow, and the only way to shut them up is for the Lakers to come through and win a championship.
Coincidentally, Scotto also noted the recent rumors of DeAndre Jordan being linked to the Lakers should he be bought out. At 33 years old, would give the Lakers yet another player to add to the list that most would consider advanced age.
But the most important thing is how everyone gels on the court. For as many jokes as are being made about the Lakers’ age, most of these players are coming off excellent seasons showing they can still contribute at a high level. Should they all come together, the Lakers will be making a deep run into the playoffs.
Trevor Ariza believes Lakers experience is an advantage
Regardless of what anyone on the outside says, the Lakers themselves believe their age and experience give them an advantage this season, as Trevor Ariza pointed out.
“I believe the upside to that is we’ve all seen so much in this league that nothing surprises,” Ariza said. “We understand how long the season is. How to pace yourself, how to take care of your body. Understanding how important it is for everybody to be on the same page to get to that ultimate goal, and that’s winning the championship at the end of the year.”