NBA Season Preview: Los Angeles Lakers

D'Angelo Russell showed signs, but mostly had an up-and-down rookie season.


Camp Location: UC Santa Barbara

Coach: Luke Walton, first year as NBA head coach.

Last Season: 17-65, did not make playoffs.

Key Returnees: D’Angelo Russell, Jordan Clarkson, Julius Randle, Larry Nance Jr., Nick Young, Louis Williams, Tarik Black, Marcelo Huertas, Metta World Peace, Anthony Brown.

Key Additions: Brandon Ingram (rookie, Duke), Jose Calderon (New York), Luol Deng (Miami), Timofey Mozgov (Cleveland), Ivica Zubac (Serbia).

Key Losses: Kobe Bryant (retired), Roy Hibbert (Charlotte), Ryan Kelly (Atlanta), Robert Sacre (New Orleans), Brandon Bass (LA Clippers).

Outlook: This is a strange team. There’s plenty of nice young talent in D’Angelo Russell, Jordan Clarkson, Julius Randle and Larry Nance Jr. Oh, and presumably top draft pick Brandon Ingram. Coach Luke Walton also arrives with high hopes after helping the Warriors to their 73-9 season. But overall, you have to wonder what the Lakers are thinking. They overpaid for Timofey Mozgov, and that’s putting it kindly. They brought in a declining Luol Deng. They re-signed an even more declining Metta World Peace. They kept Nick Young. Hey, at least Kobe Bryant won’t be around to witness it this time. Bottom line? Right now, the Lakers are a lot closer to what the once-comical crosstown Clippers used to be than they are to a winning organization.