Things did not go well for the Los Angeles Lakers this year. Despite grabbing LeBron James this past offseason, the Lakers failed to make the postseason and are now sitting at home watching the rest of the playoffs.
The team was plagued by unrest all year, not only with injuries to James but with rumors about trades flying around. Anthony Davis was a target for Los Angeles, and after some wrangling by Davis and his agent he wound up… still with the New Orleans Pelicans.
Davis tried to go nuclear in New Orleans, and it didn’t work. Meanwhile, all that did was piss off the players on the Lakers who were potential trade bait.
“It was annoying. Nowadays everything is on social media,” Josh Hart said to reporters last week.
“For the first time in our life, as young players… (It was) the first time realizing that basketball is a business.” [said Kyle Kuzma].
”It affected it a lot. Lots of trade talk was there,” Caldwell-Pope said. “Everybody was kind of worried about that. Especially the guys that haven’t been through it, they was worried where they was going to end up, how they was going to do it. How it was going to mentally affect them. It affected the locker room a lot.”
This feels a fairly obvious and I wonder how the Lakers will function as an organization next year if they don’t clear out some of these guys and bring in the new blood they’ve been hoping to grab with all of their free agent money.
This year was ugly for L.A., but next year might be much the same.