Lakers Rumors: LA’s Lack of Trade Assets Will Force Team to Stand Pat

Composed of a cabal of human DVDs from the video store's $5 bin, three aging Hall of Famers playing out their twilight years and an ornery coach who was best known to some fans as "Not Phil" last season, the 2013-14 Los Angeles Lakers are nothing if not adaptable.

Mike D'Antoni's rotating cast features 11 players averaging more than 10 minutes per game (minimum 10 games played). On any night Xavier Henry could play 30 minutes or 12 depending on the situation. When Jordan Hill's special brand of energy is best served towel-waving instead of banging bodies, his minutes could cut in thirds.

The state of flux has only increased since Kobe Bryant's return.

With Steve Blake, Jordan Farmar and Steve Nash all out with injuries, D'Antoni was forced to move Bryant essentially to a full-time point guard role. Keep in mind that point guard is the deepest position in the league, a never-ending run of young, athletic players who could run any 25-year-old man ragged—let alone one a decade older coming off an Achilles injury.

"I don't really have a choice right now," Bryant said, via USA Today's Adi Joseph. "I've got to get out there and do a lot more than expected in terms of handling the ball and doing significantly more running."

Bryant's first couple forays into running the point was a mixed bag. He and his Lakers teammates were dreadful in a 122-97 loss to Oklahoma City on Friday, with Bryant finishing with 13 assists but nearly double as many turnovers (seven) as points. Things went a bit better a day later against Charlotte, as Bryant had 21 points, eight assists, seven rebounds and a somewhat misleading seven turnovers. The Lakers, particularly Pau Gasol, seemed to have a case of the dropsies in Los Angeles' 88-85 win.

That said, it's been a layup line for opposing point guards. Kemba Walker and Russell Westbrook both got to the rim with ease, f...

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