Diagnosing Los Angeles Lakers’ Remaining Roster Flaws

Optimism comes cheaply in August for followers of the Los Angeles Lakers. It should not, however, be confused with reality.

Make no mistake: The Lakers of 2014-15 will not be very good. Even with some offseason moves designed to shore up more than a few weaknesses, Byron Scott’s first year as head coach promises to be a rocky one.

It would seem there is nowhere for these Lakers to go but up after finishing 27-55 last year, the team’s worst in franchise history. Yet there exists enough question marks on the current 13-man roster to warrant a good dose of head-scratching.

Lakers fortunes begin and end with the 36-year-old Kobe Bryant, who is coming off two major, career-threatening injuries in the past year. The big question mark, of course, is Kobe’s health and whether or not his well-traveled basketball legs can withstand the rigors of an 82-game season at 30-plus minutes per game.

Assuming Bryant plays injury-free and averages 30 minutes and 20 points, the rest of the roster will need to step up and have career years in order for this team to have any chance of making the NBA playoffs.  And, that may require a huge leap of faith and a lot of luck.


A Look At a Suspect Roster

Small Forward: The Bench Looks Better Than the Starters

Nick Young is the only other Laker not named Kobe Bryant who could be counted on for major minutes and plentiful scoring. Happily signed to a four-year extension ($21.5 million), the Los Angeles native is poised to improve on a year in which he averaged a career-best 17.9 points per game.

Scott has already made it known he prefers that Swaggy P come off the bench. Last season's most successful experiment saw Young not only score from all over the court but also improve dramatically as a defender.

Young is needed to serve as catalyst and driving force behind a second unit that otherwise appears...

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