The Los Angeles Lakers ventured through a busy offseason revamping the roster around its star talent. The Lakers front office added several proven veterans who provide depth and versatility. It’s all led Stephen A. Smith to firmly voice that LeBron James should be grateful for one of his new teammates.
Lakers retool the roster over busy offseason
After suffering a disappointing first-round playoff exit, the Lakers‘ front office quickly restructured the roster.
It began with the team acquiring star point guard Russell Westbrook to pair alongside James and Anthony Davis. General manager Rob Pelinka quickly shaped the roster around the star talent through free agency by adding proven veterans who provide shooting and versatile defenders.
All that has led Stephen A. Smith to voice that he believes the Lakers should be thankful for adding one particular player this offseason.
Stephen A. Smith believes LeBron James should be thankful for 1 Lakers teammate
The Lakers‘ busy offseason featured the team adding a strong veteran presence around its star power.
It featured the team inking Carmelo Anthony to a one-year deal to further fortify the bench with scoring and shooting. During a segment of ESPN’s Stephen A.’s World, Stephen A. Smith voiced that he believes the Lakers should be thankful for Anthony joining the roster.
“The Los Angeles Lakers are lucky to have him on their roster this season,” Smith said. “LeBron and the Lakers should be down on their hands and knees thanking God they got Carmelo Anthony in a Lakers uniform. Because even at 37 Carmelo Anthony still has a lot of good basketball left in him.
“He showed that in the last two years in Portland after almost everyone wrote him off. He had an entire season out of the NBA by the way. Carmelo is just as good a scorer off the bench as there is as far as I am concerned. He’s got that kind of potential and he’s hungry too. He wants to win and he joined the Lakers to win. He could have gotten more money elsewhere and playing time elsewhere too, but right now it’s about the championship.”
Although Anthony is heading into his 19th season, he remains an effective scorer off the bench. His willingness to accept that role last season has allowed him to extend his career. He’s coming off a productive campaign where he averaged 13.4 points in 24.5 minutes per contest while hitting at a 40.9% clip from 3-point range on 4.7 attempts from beyond the arc per game.
Beyond his production, Anthony brings another steady voice in the locker room that Los Angeles can lean on throughout the season. His playing time may fluctuate, but Anthony has plenty to offer the Lakers next season.
Los Angeles eyeing NBA title contention
Anthony’s arrival is one of the many Lakers’ roster additions geared toward contending for an NBA title.
Los Angeles is pegged as one of the championship favorites due to its deep and versatile group of talent. However, lingering doubt remains ahead of next season. Much of which centers around Russell Westbrook‘s fit playing alongside LeBron James.
The pairing will adjust their playing styles as each has worked most effectively with the ball in their hands. Meanwhile, doubt has arisen because the roster is the oldest in the league. It’s led to concerns sprouting regarding the team managing its health throughout the season.
All that aside, the Lakers hold the pieces in place that could bring them an 18th NBA title.