As it currently stands, the Los Angeles Lakers are viewed as one of the biggest championship favorites in the NBA along with the Brooklyn Nets and defending champion Milwaukee Bucks. The talent on the Lakers’ roster makes that understandable, but there is still a lot of work to be done and Phil Handy understands that.
The Lakers’ assistant coach is one of the most respected in the entire NBA and he has had plenty of success wherever he goes. In fact, it was Handy who was working out LeBron James and Russell Westbrook in the video that was recently posted to social media.
But Handy is refusing to get too far ahead of himself when it comes to the Lakers’ chances at winning the NBA Championship. In an interview on SiriusXM NBA Radio, Handy made it clear that the Lakers have a lot of work to do to build that chemistry and sacrifice will be needed, via Ryan Gaydos of Fox News:
“Paper doesn’t win championships for us. Those names that are on that paper, are some phenomenal names. … We gotta do our work and make sure we gel. Do we fit? These guys, they gotta figure out ways to play with each other and sacrifice, and let their names take over,” Handy said.
Handy would continue on, adding that nothing is automatic, even with the talent assembled on this year’s roster:
“You know, you look at that piece of paper and say, Lakers are loaded, automatic championship. Nah man, we got a lot of work to do in terms of just gelling, finding our rhythm and being able to be cohesive as a unit.”
The addition of Westbrook is obviously the big move and that is the one that will require the most adjustments from players on the roster. No one is quite sure how a trio of James, Westbrook and Anthony Davis will work together, especially as the first two are used to always having the ball in their hands and being the primary playmaker.
The Lakers put the type of role players around their superstar trio that should help elevate them and the Lakers and keep them as championship contenders. But Handy knows it won’t be given to them, and he will do everything he can to make sure the Lakers are putting in that work to get where they want to be.
Howard excited to play with talent on Lakers roster
One thing that is clear is that the talent is there on the Lakers roster with multiple future Hall of Famers. James, Westbrook, Davis, as well as Dwight Howard and Carmelo Anthony will all be enshrined one day and Howard can’t wait to get out on the court with this stacked roster.
“It will be crazy,” Howard said. “It’s something that’s really hard to fathom, just imagine seeing all of us on the floor at the same time. Not on the All-Star team, not on the Olympic team, not for a charity game, but for an actual season, all of us will be together. So I think that’s gonna be great. All our guys are hungry, we want to win, we want to stay in the best shape as possible, so I think it’s gonna be an awesome time this year just having everybody on the floor practicing, going hard, understanding that it’s only one mission and that’s to win the championship.”
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!