Byron Scott says Lakers may need to trade for point guard. For now, Ronnie Price starts, Jeremy Lin off bench.

58 Comments

The Lakers have their final preseason game Friday night, hosting the Sacramento Kings, and we’re going to see something that seemed impossible when camp opened but appears headed to become a regular season reality.

Ronnie Price will start at the point, and Jeremy Lin will come off the bench.

With Steve Nash out through most of the preseason (and now the entire regular season) Scott has leaned toward starting the journeyman Price for a while. It could change before the Lakers tip off the regular season against Houston Tuesday, but don’t bet on it. From Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News.

The more interesting comment from Byron Scott was this, as tweeted by Bill Oram of the Los Angeles Times.

I’d look for this to happen, but the Lakers are not going to take on a long-term contract in return. And no, they don’t have the assets to get Rajon Rondo, so don’t bother.

The first thing Price starting means first is Scott does not trust rookie Jordan Clarkson to run the show (although he may play some at the two guard spot off the bench). If the Lakers make a trade for another point guard, that would drop Clarkson farther back in the rotation at the one.

It means Scott likes Lin with a Lakers second unit that is more athletic and dynamic than the starters — Lin, Nick Young, Julius Randle, Xavier Henry and Ryan Kelly (once all of them get healthy).

Price has been in the NBA nine seasons but basally as the third point guard, a guy respected as a leader but who isn’t much of a scoring threat, nor is he a great playmaker. So far in preseason Price has looked okay at times but he’s shooting 40.9 percent overall, 21.4 percent from three, and has less than a 2-1 assist to turnover ratio. And that’s all against preseason rotations. Plus he’s not a very good defender.

In spot duty Price would be a good guy to have on the roster, but leaning on him like this shows just how much Scott is looking for anything that might work with this Lakers team.