The Los Angeles Lakers are looking well-equipped to take on the 2023-24 season as they added several high-level role players to a roster that just made the Western Conference Finals.
The Lakers signed Gabe Vincent, Taurean Prince, Jaxson Hayes, Cam Reddish and Christian Wood in free agency while also retaining Austin Reaves, D’Angelo Russell and Rui Hachimura. Those players make great complements to LeBron James and Anthony Davis who should be 100 percent healthy for the regular season.
Aside from their success in free agency, Los Angeles also did well for themselves in the 2023 NBA Draft as they came away with a solid group of prospects. The Lakers took Jalen Hood-Schifino No. 17 overall and later took Maxwell Lewis at No. 40 in the second round. The purple and gold didn’t stop there as they also signed undrafted free agents Colin Castleton, Alex Fudge and D’Moi Hodge to two-way contracts.
With the parent roster stacked with veteran players, the incoming rookies will be getting their reps with the South Bay Lakers. South Bay is also going to be a fun team to watch this upcoming year and they recently released their 2023-24 schedule.
— Daniel Starkand (@DStarkand) September 8, 2023
South Bay will play 50 games in the regular season with their opener at home against the Rip City Remix, the Portland Trail Blazers’ G League affiliate. They close out November with a matchup against the G League Ignite and will play a few games in December before annual G League Winter Showcase.
The G League has seen several noteworthy prospects work their way up to the NBA and is a valuable resource for players like the Lakers rookies. South Bay will be led by Dane Johnson who replaces Miles Simon after the latter accepted a role with the Phoenix Suns.
Johnson’s got a good group of players to work this year, particularly Hood-Schifino and Lewis, who project as long-term pieces for the Lakers. Castleton is also an intriguing big man prospect, while Hodge has shown he can serve as a microwave scorer off the bench.
All eyes will be on the Lakers as they make another run at a championship, but fans should also tune in to watch South Bay grow and develop their next wave of players.
Max Christie speaks to importance of getting minutes in G League
One Lakers player who graduated from South Bay is Max Christie, who has a real shot to earn a role on the main team. Christie developed behind the scenes and spoke to the importance of getting minutes in the G League his rookie year.
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