Lakers’ disappointment could lead to makeover
The Los Angeles Lakers are getting used to disappointment.
One year after failing to earn a third consecutive NBA title under Phil Jackson, the Lakers again failed to advance beyond the playoffs’ second round.
Their faith in their talents wasn’t really shaken, but it remains to be seen if the roster does get shaken up now.
“Definitely underachieved,” Lakers forward Metta World Peace said. “The best team in the NBA lost in five (games to Oklahoma City).”
Kobe Bryant, Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol and World Peace are all under contract for next season if Bynum’s team option is exercised, as expected. However, the Lakers’ weaknesses with regard to team speed and perimeter scoring punch have been made clear.
Gasol is a candidate to be traded, but it remains to be seen whether the Lakers bring back point guard Ramon Sessions, who can opt out of his contract and explore free agency.
Bryant stated confidence in Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak to figure out what is the best next step for the team to return to the NBA’s elite. Bryant pointed to the San Antonio Spurs as the model for a team that can retool while staying a contender.
“It’s kind of unfamiliar territory; I’m really not used to it,” Bryant said. “It’s pretty odd for me. I’m not the most patient of people and the organization’s not extremely patient either. We want to win and win now.”