It has been yet another long and disappointing season for the Los Angeles Lakers thus far. The once-Western Conference powerhouse is now a bottom feeder in the West and hoping to turn things around as quickly as possible to get back to form.
On Tuesday night, Byron Scott’s Lakers will face off against the New Orleans Pelicans who were considered to be a legitimate playoff contender heading into the 2015-16 campaign. Anthony Davis and company have struggled and have only three more wins (11) than the Lakers heading into tonight’s game.
Coach Scott, who once led the then-Hornets through a rebuilding process and into the playoffs, was asked about the similarities between the two teams. Scott believes the Lakers have potential to surpass New Orleans’ current rebuilding efforts next year with strong summer of off-season moves via Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News:
“I think so,” Scott said. “But the summer is big.”
Scott also feels the talented young core of players the Lakers have assembled are coming around in comparison to Pelicans. Scott seems optimistic the team’s true potential will be seen on the basketball floor in the near future, via Medina:
“We have a lot of similarities as far as that we’re going upward,” Scott said. “The progression is definitely there. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel and see the progress that these guys have made halfway through into the season.”
Heading into the offseason, the Lakers will be armed with the cap space and the intention to land some major upgrades in NBA free agency. Kevin Durant will become an unrestricted free agent and arguably the team’s top target while Los Angeles native DeMar DeRozan is also quickly becoming another target the team appears to be seriously considering pursuing.
Unlike in years past, the Lakers front office will no longer have to navigate around how another star will play alongside Kobe Bryant. The five-time NBA champion may help the team pursue some free agents, but will retire this summer leaving the team’s options wide open once free agency begins.
A lot can happen between now and the start of free agency in July, but one thing is for certain, the Lakers brass wants to make a splash and believe they’ll be able to do just that.