Lakers Name Pau Gasol Co-Captain, Declare Steve Blake Starter
After all the trade shuffling that went down Thursday afternoon the Lakers suddenly have a few roster questions to answer. With the departure of Derek Fisher, the team was left without a starting point guard or team co-captain.
Obviously the arrival of Ramon Sessions is expected to fill the point guard void, but as to who would be taking over as captain was less certain.
It was announced today (via Mark Medina of the L.A. Times) that the team promoted forward Pau Gasol to co-captain alongside Kobe Bryant. The position was previously held by Fisher.
Another change involves the Lakers giving Pau Gasol a co-captain role with Kobe Bryant after the team traded veteran guard Derek Fisher to the Rockets for Hill. But beyond the title change, Lakers players and Brown offered little insight about how they’ll fill the leadership void left by Fisher’s departure. Bryant and Gasol didn’t talk to reporters.
Coach Brown also announced that Steve Blake would assume the starting duties for now in the wake of Fisher’s departure. With Sessions not expected to play Friday night against Minnesota, the starting position lands on Blake’s shoulders by default. However, he wouldn’t commit to Blake as the starting point guard for the rest of the season.
“(Blake’s) my starter right now,” Brown said. “I think I would be off-base if I said is Steve going to be my starter for the rest of the year. I don’t know what this kid can bring to the table in terms of Sessions. But Steve is my starting point guard.”
The team did call rookie Darius Morris up from the D-League on Friday, presumably to help carry the point guard load against the Timberwolves.
There’s no question the Lakers are currently in a fluctuating state, and will have to adjust to the loss of their captain. Still, the trades have been viewed as positives, and are expected to help the team on the court.