Why LA Lakers Will Be Worse Next Season

Simply put, the Los Angeles Lakers are going to be worse next season without Dwight Howard, Metta World Peace, Earl Clark and several other key players from last season.

There is always optimism entering a new NBA season. Regardless of whether it is a contender or a bottom-feeder, each team enters the season with higher expectations. 

Whether it's developing young talent or competing for an NBA championship, very few teams go into a season expecting to stay stagnant.

This particular incarnation of the Lakers looks like it may differ from the norm. 

With no prospects to develop and a bevvy of veterans and role players surrounding Kobe Bryant, there is no way that they will be better than they were last season.

While optimists can argue that new acquisitions such as Nick Young and Jordan Farmar fit more into Mike D'Antoni's system than role players from last season, the lack of talent and depth on this roster is too glaringly obvious to overlook. 

Looking up and down the roster, there are flaws to be had at every position.

Steve Nash and Jordan Farmar can make a formidable one-two punch at the point-guard position if Nash can stay healthy. However, Nash's injury woes and defensive liabilities are well documented and won't be neutralized much by a more defensive-minded Farmar. 

Bryant is looking to return to form following his Achilles-tendon injury. This means that there is no guarantee that the Black Mamba returns as the Black Mamba. With Jodie Meeks still developing into a more complete player, the Lakers' hopes of being competitive rest on Bryant's full recovery.

Without Metta World Peace and Earl Clark to man the small-forward position, the Lakers have a glaring hole here that really decimates their already putrid perimeter defense.

As Nash was aging and Bryant was picking his spots last season to be ...

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