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If the Lakers have a perfect offseason, are they contenders?


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#1 bfc1125roy

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Posted February 09, 2018 - 05:31 PM

 PHOTO-Lonzo-Ball-Paul-George-And-Lebron-

 

This topic came up from the free agency thread, but I think it's worthy of it's own detailed discussion. If we have a perfect offseason and manage to sign LeBron and George, while keeping Randle using GCMD's strategy, are we contenders with the following roster? 

 

PG: Ball/Not Ennis

SG: George/Hart

SF: Ingram/?

PF: LBJ/Kuzma

C: ?/Randle

 

I think this team could beat the Warriors. There's a lot of versatility there and we could switch pretty much any screen. If Ingram focuses more on defense, we have our 2 elite defenders. Plus a scoring punch off the bench with Kuzma and Randle. That bench could run and gun hard. Luke wouldn't be an appropriate coach for a team of that caliber though. I'd want Fizdale. Here's my reasoning... 

 

You take the 2011 Mavs, or the 2004 Pistons. Neither of those teams were better on paper than the teams they faced in the finals. But they played a smart defensive system. 

 

No team will likely ever again be able to have the offensive firepower the Warriors have. But the way to stop them is to slow down the pace, and play tough, physical defense. Limiting the # of possessions and controlling the glass. Every championship team in the last 20 years has had 2 elite defenders (Iggy/Green, Duncan/Leonard, Kobe/Artest, MJ/Pippen) etc. It's an absolute requirement. George can be one, and hopefully Ingram develops into a second given he won't have to carry the offensive load. 
 
  • You have to understand how the Warriors run their offense. It's very screen and cutting heavy, especially with the split actions. In order to combat that, you need to be able to switch everything. We've actually been able to keep up the Warriors this year because of our switch heavy defense. LBJ and PG can both guard 1-5. Lonzo and Ingram are both long and can also switch a lot without giving up mismatches. That is key.
  • On offense, we need something better than Walton's chest series. But you have two amazing facilitators in LBJ and Lonzo (critical to beat a zone). You have a top off ball player in PG. Three guys who can score in ISO (George, Ingram, LBJ). That's enough versatility there to run all sorts of actions. I particularly like our ability to create a triangle in the low post, enter the ball into James and have Lonzo and George run a split cut. Gives us the option to have James post up or an easy pass into a layup. Or to have George come up to the pinch post. We can also run great plays such as the loop and elevator plays to free up George/Ingram for catch and shoots. Not to mention PnR when we need it. 
  • The only thing that could hold us back is 3 point shooting. For that Lonzo and Ingram will have to step up their game (or at least 1 of them). If they do, we'll be fine.

I understand LeBron won't want to play with young talent, but if Ingram and Ball develop fast in the offseason, we could see some great results. 

 

I'm not worried about LeBron's age. By the way LeBron is playing right now, if we surround him with the right role players, he can remain an effective facilitator and post threat into his later 30s. His genetics seem to rival Shaqs, but unlike him he takes better care of his body.

 

It is a pipedream though...


Edited by bfc1125roy, February 09, 2018 - 06:15 PM.


#2 bfc1125roy

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Posted February 09, 2018 - 06:00 PM

Can a mod add a poll with 3 options

 

1) Yes

2) No

3) Not next year but maybe in 2+ years



#3 JGuez

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Posted February 09, 2018 - 06:23 PM

If the miracle happens and we got both PG and LeBron I think there's a scenario where Randle starts at center and there's an emphasis on team defense. The rim protection on paper would be weak, but Ingram, LeBron, and PG are all big/long enough to make the defense as a whole VERY difficult to score on and get passes through the lanes.

 

Even if he came off the bench though which is obviously likely in that scenario, I do think we'd be contenders. LeBron automatically makes a team a contender in the sense that he is the best player in the world, but I don't think we'd be the best team in the West...... on paper anyway.

 

So pretty much, I agree with what you said for the most part lol.


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#4 GCMD

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Posted February 09, 2018 - 07:44 PM

Contenders?  Yes.

 

Favorites?  No...not yet.  Ingram and Kuzma would have to progress as much next year as they did this year and Lonzo would have to make an Ingram-type progression from Year 1 to Year 2.

 

 

Defensively, we'd definitely be top 5-10...I just worry about the offense.


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#5 bfc1125roy

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Posted February 10, 2018 - 01:17 AM

Contenders?  Yes.

 

Favorites?  No...not yet.  Ingram and Kuzma would have to progress as much next year as they did this year and Lonzo would have to make an Ingram-type progression from Year 1 to Year 2.

 

 

Defensively, we'd definitely be top 5-10...I just worry about the offense.

 

I think those guys will get better playing alongside guys like LeBron and George. But agreed that they'll have to make a big jump.



#6 LACAS

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Posted February 10, 2018 - 06:36 AM

I think those guys will get better playing alongside guys like LeBron and George. 

 

100%



#7 LACAS

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Posted February 10, 2018 - 06:37 AM

IMO we would be solid and scary contenders but the cohesiveness of GS cant be underestimated, I still believe GS has this year and next of total dominance. 



#8 lakerfan98

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Posted February 10, 2018 - 10:16 AM

Hypothetically somebody is gonna have to log heavy minutes at SG.  I know people love to talk about positionless basketball but I have a feeling that person is going to be Ingram and although I like the strides he's making as a ball handler / play maker I still think he's too slow for most 2s.  Kuzma is obviously coming off the bench no debate but i think it's likely that Ingram would end up being a starter but being the first player subbed out.  Idk how PG and LBJ are going to start at the 3 and 4 and play 35 mpg and there still be enough minutes for Kuz and Ingram to get 30+.  Ingram and PG would have to spend a decent amount of time at SG for Kuz to get enough minutes at the 4 and Ingram to get enough minutes total.  Don't get me wrong it's a nice problem to have I just think it's a bit of a log jam.    



#9 bfc1125roy

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Posted February 10, 2018 - 11:58 AM

Seems like everyone is in agreement about the fact that we would contend. So now I will propose some new questions to keep the discussion moving

 

  1. How would you fill out the roster I posted above
  2. What sort of offense and defense would you run
  3. What lineups are good? What if we play against a team with a lot of size?
  4. Could Luke manage a more veteran locker room? 


#10 GCMD

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Posted February 10, 2018 - 12:10 PM

 

Seems like everyone is in agreement about the fact that we would contend. So now I will propose some new questions to keep the discussion moving

 

  1. How would you fill out the roster I posted above
  2. What sort of offense and defense would you run
  3. What lineups are good? What if we play against a team with a lot of size?
  4. Could Luke manage a more veteran locker room? 

 

 

 

I couldn't answer the last 3 but #1 is easy.  Players would take less to play with LeBron and PG13.  Luke could have his pick of role players.


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#11 bfc1125roy

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Posted February 10, 2018 - 12:18 PM

I couldn't answer the last 3 but #1 is easy.  Players would take less to play with LeBron and PG13.  Luke could have his pick of role players.

 

Choosing a center might be tricky. I don't think Randle could start at center quite yet. 


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#12 GCMD

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Posted February 11, 2018 - 09:57 AM

Choosing a center might be tricky. I don't think Randle could start at center quite yet. 

 

 

If we landed both, Lopez would re-sign for whatever we offered him...most Free Agent centers would also (outside of DJ and DMC).  I don't think it will be a problem.


Edited by GCMD, February 11, 2018 - 09:58 AM.

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#13 LakerGeezer

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Posted February 11, 2018 - 01:22 PM

Yes we would be a contender, no we would not beat GSW, assuming no injuries.

 

This is why I think signing a 34YO LBJ is not a great idea.  Our young core will just be blooming at that point where GSW starts to decline AND LBJ likely does too.  We will then be faced with another Kobe scenario- huge contract + past his prime superstar.

 

For me the perfect offseason is PG and someone else younger, or wait until 2019.

 

Baseball GMs seem to have finally learned the lesson- in their prime/ slightly past their prime star FAs sometimes might work for a year or two and then the decline starts but you have to keep writing the checks.


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#14 GCMD

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Posted February 11, 2018 - 01:30 PM

Yes we would be a contender, no we would not beat GSW, assuming no injuries.

 

This is why I think signing a 34YO LBJ is not a great idea.  Our young core will just be blooming at that point where GSW starts to decline AND LBJ likely does too.  We will then be faced with another Kobe scenario- huge contract + past his prime superstar.

 

For me the perfect offseason is PG and someone else younger, or wait until 2019.

 

Baseball GMs seem to have finally learned the lesson- in their prime/ slightly past their prime star FAs sometimes might work for a year or two and then the decline starts but you have to keep writing the checks.

 

 

Who makes more sense than LeBron?  Serious question.

 

DMC is injured

DeAndre Jordan is 29 but very limited offensively.

Lopez is slow but he'll take whatever we give him.

IT is a bad defender, would want to start and would want much more than I think he's worth.

 

LeBron hasn't had a major injury, could play PF and still be a top 5 player for the next 4 years and could give us time for Ingram, Ball and Kuzma to prove they can help PG13.

 

I'm not saying there is no risk signing LeBron.  I just wonder what other option makes more sense.


Edited by GCMD, February 11, 2018 - 01:31 PM.

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#15 UKUGA

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Posted February 12, 2018 - 07:37 AM

Who makes more sense than LeBron? Serious question.

DMC is injured
DeAndre Jordan is 29 but very limited offensively.
Lopez is slow but he'll take whatever we give him.
IT is a bad defender, would want to start and would want much more than I think he's worth.

LeBron hasn't had a major injury, could play PF and still be a top 5 player for the next 4 years and could give us time for Ingram, Ball and Kuzma to prove they can help PG13.

I'm not saying there is no risk signing LeBron. I just wonder what other option makes more sense.


Only 2 options:

1) wait for 2019
2) trade for Anthony Davis and somehow avoid gutting the roster

Don't feed the trolls. 


#16 DLN

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Posted February 12, 2018 - 08:24 AM

That team would be a contender. Easily. Better than what Cavs and Thunder have right now.

 

But beating the Warriors in 18/19 might still be tough since they're the best team in history. The problem for the Warriors is that at some point they have to break up their big 4 due to tax-issues. The Lakers wouldn't be in that same situation and could literally improve every year for half a decade.

 

Contender in 18/19

Favorite in 19/20 and on



#17 last stand 2.0

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Posted February 12, 2018 - 08:36 AM

Personally I think the best case scenario for us is the we get George and some other pieces while lebron goes to Houston. Let Houston and golden state beat each other up for the next 2-3 years and then we’ll come out of the fog and become top dogs when they’re both done dominating

Though lebron going to Houston renders the nba finals useless

It’ll be like the early 2000s where the WCF were the nba finals basically because the east teams weren’t in the same stratosphere as the west teams
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#18 noknife

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Posted February 12, 2018 - 08:58 AM

They are contenders with literally any 2 deserving max players. LeBron is obviously the best by far but he is old and will decline heavily wherever he signs next. PG is the goal and the Lakers should be fine getting any other real max to play with him, whether that is LeBron or someone else, they will be fine.

#19 KidRN

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Posted February 12, 2018 - 09:06 AM

They are contenders with literally any 2 deserving max players.

I strongly disagree. Without Bron, we have zero chance of winning a title.

Boogie prior to the injury and PG are max players. We wouldnt be a serious contender with those two. Rockets, SA, and GS would still be better than us by a pretty decent margin imo.

Edited by KidRN, February 12, 2018 - 09:08 AM.


#20 noknife

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Posted February 12, 2018 - 09:16 AM

I strongly disagree. Without Bron, we have zero chance of winning a title.

Boogie prior to the injury and PG are max players. We wouldnt be a serious contender with those two. Rockets, SA, and GS would still be better than us by a pretty decent margin imo.


They would be better but they are getting older and will inevitably lose pieces come 2019, of course this is all just wild predictions, so who knows. I think either way it breaks the Lakers look fine going forward.




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