Writers’ Roundtable: Lakers Starting 5 Training Camp To-Do’s
What does Lakers SF Metta World Peace need to work on during training camp?
Josh Sexton: Getting used to being ignored by opposing defenses. Thanks to sharing a starting lineup with Kobe, Pau, Dwight and Nash, opposing defenses may forget Metta is even on the court. This means World Peace will likely get more uncontested jumpers and open three-point looks than any player in league history. If he is able to take advantage of these open looks, the Lakers go from being really dangerous to incredibly dangerous. Also, don’t say anything too stupid. You know, like predicting the team will go 73-9…
Suki Thind: World Peace just needs to maintain the conditioning he’s supposedly been working on this off-season; when he finally got into shape towards the end of the season, he began to really play great. World Peace, to me, was the defensive captain on the team last season; the guy calling out picks and communicating on defense. I believe that when Metta’s defense is clicking, his offense tends to come along with it. There’s no question the Lakers love him exactly for that reason–defense–so if he can simply focus on making opposing players work on the offensive end, I think he’ll start the season off on a great note.
Elizabeth Benson: There is one word that sums up what Metta World Peace needs to work on in camp: conditioning. Last year’s lockout severely took its toll on Metta as his back problems that weren’t properly treated during the lockout affected practically every aspect of his game. It has been reported and witnessed that Metta is in the best shape he has been in since he arrived in LA and that he has lost weight while getting stronger. Consistent conditioning to ensure that he remains in this type of shape will benefit Metta in many ways. However, it will help with his defense and shooting form, which will be the two areas of highest impact for Metta this season.
Jabari Davis: MWP is one of the more intriguing parts of the mix, as he has become the ‘forgotten man’ of the bunch. Coming off what he would agree was a sub par 2011-2012 season, MWP is reportedly in the best shape of his life. Dedication to the defensive end will be his focus, but the addition of a point guard as masterful as Nash should also help MWP return to form on the offensive end. The new offense should actually generate all types of backdoor movement and off-ball cuts that will free MWP up for plenty of mid-range and slashing action.
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