Los Angeles Lakers vice president of basketball Rob Pelinka is among many executives who decided to join their team in the Walt Disney World bubble.
And while the setting can — at times — sound like a relaxing vacation, Pelinka sees it as hard work to ensure his team is ready to go for their march through the Playoffs. This mindset has paid off so far, as the Lakers quickly clinched the Western Conference’s No. 1 seed and now are awaiting their second-round opponent.
Pelinka recently described the daily schedule of his time in the bubble, explaining that contrary to what might be popular belief, it’s actually been the busiest part of his tenure as Lakers GM, via Spectrum SportsNet:
“Friends and family seem to think we’re just in our room with tons of time to watch Netflix. I’ve actually found since we’ve been here this has been one of the busiest stretches in my tenure as GM. We’re just a player-centric organization. We want to make sure from the big stuff to the little stuff, everything for the players is taken care of. So there’s a lot of daily troubleshooting, making sure guys have exactly what they need to perform at the highest level.
“We’re staying incredibly connected as a staff with our performance staff, coaches have constant meetings. We wanted to make sure this place felt like a Lakers home because we might be here for over three months. So kudos to our hospitality and player services teams who helped us get the rooms decorated and make it feel and breathe the Lakers culture. It’s been a ton of work but a lot of run work. You can see in the guys’ spirit they understand we’re here to service their needs and take care of them, and I think they appreciate that.
“A typical day starts early, we have practice, obviously games, tons of meetings. It’s nice to be able to meet in person now, just because we’re in the confines of the bubble, where everything is not on Zoom. That’s been great, just the eye-to-eye contact. Just busy really, up until late at night. I’ve been trying to also stay on top of the Draft stuff with the Draft in October, so lots of studying. There has not been a dull moment at all.”
It seems as though Pelinka has been constantly working to make sure the Lakers have everything they need to have success in the bubble, which further supports his long-held message of doing whatever players need.
Given how unusual this postseason is, it’s good for players to know that they have a supportive front office that — quite literally — will be by their side no matter what.
Pelinka, Frank Vogel demonstrate team-first approach in practice
Pelinka and head coach Vogel further demonstrated their commitment to helping the team in the bubble acting as cones during a Lakers practice.
“I didn’t see any available cones, so I stood off one elbow, he stood off the other, and the players had to run around us,” Vogel explained.
“We served as cones in practice, which was different for both of us. Honestly, the group we have here, we’re having a lot of fun. This idea that we all have to pick up slack, carry a couple extra bags, we’re all buying into it and embracing it.”
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