After a successful 2022-23 season, the Los Angeles Lakers came into the offseason with several decisions to make regarding their roster.
The Lakers spent the past couple of years overturning the roster in hopes of chasing a title, but this year they decided to prioritize the chemistry and continuity of the team. In order to do that, the front office re-signed Austin Reaves, D’Angelo Russell and Rui Hachimura, who all had their moments in the postseason.
It marked a change in strategy from Rob Pelinka, who made the wise decision to keep the bulk of the roster together. When asked about his approach, Pelinka explained that every offseason is different and that they were in a fortunate position to acquire the right players and learn from their past mistakes.
“Yeah, I think every offseason, every season you go through, is a process of discovering. I think any championship executive in any sport has done some things perfectly and has done some things where they’ve taken a risk and it hasn’t worked out. I think your job as an executive or any sports executive, is if you take a risk and it doesn’t work out the way you thought, you’ve got to fix it. And I think thankfully as a group, collectively as an organization, we obviously took a risk, we changed the way our roster was constructed, and it didn’t work but we fixed it. That’s our job and I’m grateful that together we were able to get it right last year and hopefully improve on that going into this year.”
Pelinka’s taken several risks since becoming the lead decision-maker in the front office, with his notable one being the blockbuster trade for Russell Westbrook. The Westbrook experiment failed in spectacular fashion, but Pelinka was able to flip him at the trade deadline for useful rotation pieces that fit next to LeBron James and Anthony Davis much better.
There isn’t a qualitative value teams can put on things like chemistry, but it’s oftentimes a key ingredient in championship rosters. Hopefully this time around Pelinka’s moves pan out and turn into the franchise’s 18th championship.
Rob Pelinka calls Anthony Davis ‘core’ of Lakers’ roster
Aside from the young core of players the Lakers brought back, they also managed to reach an agreement with Davis on a new extension. Rewarding Davis was a no-brainer after his playoff run and Pelinka said that he is considered to be the core of the Lakers’ continuity.
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