After posting a 19-39 record in the 2017 NBA regular season, the Los Angeles Lakers have been one of the more disappointing sports teams through the last few years. With changes in the lineup, coaching staff and front office, nothing has added up for the Lakers. With that, here is what I would do in order to “fix” the beloved Lakers nation:
Don’t Bring In Magic Johnson
There have been a load of reports that the Lakers will be bringing in Earvin “Magic” Johnson as an advisor in the front office. On top of that, Johnson has gone on record to say that if he is put in charge, he would look to bring in Kobe Bryant as well.
While Johnson and Bryant were some of the best players in NBA history, it’s an absolute mistake to bring them in. Both Johnson and Bryant have no experience when it comes to being in the front office, and to even consider it shows lack of direction within the Lakers headquarters.
I would let go of Jim Buss, but I think bringing in Johnson will result in the Lakers taking steps backwards. While it is all speculation, there are plenty of other paths the Lakers can take when it comes to finding a mind in the front office.
Stop Trading Draft Picks
It’s no secret that Brandon Ingram is nowhere near an elite player yet, but in his defense, the kid is only 19-years old. Since 2014, the Lakers have drafted two of their five started from the NBA Draft (Julius Randle and D’Angelo Russell).
If I’m the Lakers, I’m keeping my future draft picks, as well as shopping for more. Over time, the younger players can continue to develop within the system of the Lakers (assuming they’re patient).
Believe in Luke Walton
Since 2011, there have been five different head coaches within the Lakers organization. Even with only 19 wins in all of 2016-17, I think the Lakers need a young coach that the players can relate to. Walton is nowhere near one of the better coaches in the NBA right now, but all of the blame can’t go on him.
With a loose leash, Walton needs to stick around with the Lakers, unless a high-profile name hits the market that the Lakers can not resist. Many will compare Walton and the Lakers to the same experience as Derek Fisher and the Knicks, but I hope that Walton doesn’t wind up with the same ending result.
Free Up Cap Space
The Lakers are one of ten teams under the cap space right now, but are roughly $16 million behind the Nets, who are #1 when it comes to most available cap space. With Luol Deng and Timofey Mozgov set to make $15+ million a year until after the 2020 season, the Lakers have not gotten their money’s worth in a lot of players.
The Lakers are currently looking to deal away Lou Williams, which I totally agree with. While I do think he’s a great role player, that’ll clear up $21 million over the next three years for the franchise. Whether it be draft picks or an upgrade, the Lakers need to reel in something for themselves.