LA Lakers Backup Plan If Kobe Bryant Misses 2013-14 Opening Game

The Los Angeles Lakers need to have viable backup plans available for the 2013-14 season if Kobe Bryant is not ready to go on opening night.

The Black Mamba continues to spend his offseason rehabbing an Achilles tear he suffered back in April that prevented him from playing in the 2013 NBA playoffs. According to a July article by ESPN’s Arash Markazi, the Lakers “not only expect Kobe Bryant to be back by the start of the regular season but believe he could be back by the preseason.”

Considering that Bryant is so far ahead of schedule, having a Plan B, C and D doesn't seem necessary. Nevertheless, it’s always a good idea to prepare for the worst-case scenario. The question will be, what lineups should Mike D'Antoni and his coaching staff utilize if Bryant isn't readily available?


Option One: Veteran Presence

Lineup: Steve Nash, Jodie Meeks, Nick Young, Pau Gasol, Chris Kaman

The Los Angeles Lakers currently have the second-oldest roster in the NBA with an average age of 29.2 years. Additionally, they rank third in the NBA with an average experience of 7.5 career seasons.

If Bryant isn't available to start the season, the Lakers should depend on the experience of veteran players to pick up the slack.

Jodie Meeks and Nick Young are the youngsters of this lineup with 10 years of NBA experience combined. Steve Nash, Pau Gasol and Chris Kaman, meanwhile, have a stunning 39 years of NBA experience under their belts.

This lineup would bring veteran savvy and mental toughness to a team that frequently beat itself on the court last season. Nash, Gasol and Kaman are all former All-Stars who can carry the offensive by setting up in half-court sets.

Meeks and Young are primarily in the lineup for outside shooting, but Meeks is also dealing with injury troubles as he rehabs from torn ligaments in his left ankle. He rep...

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