Lakers Media Day 2019
Lakers Media Day 2019
By James Luckey Jr
Editor, Observer Group Newspapers of Southern California Inc.
A year ago there was a huge buzz surrounding Lakers Media Day with the arrive of LeBron James to Los Angeles being matched with a group of young up and coming and rather unproven Laker teammates. This year there was still a buzz, but that buzz was LeBron being matched with another superstar in 6’10” Anthony Davis to make one of the top (if not the top) duo in the NBA this year with a team full of established veterans. Last years buzz was that of the unknown, this year the buzz was that of exception to not only be back in the playoffs for the first time in 5 seasons but to be in the conversation of NBA title contenders.
LeBron seemed right at home with the LA media, talking about how he spent his summer not playing into late June for the first time since 2009. I found it interesting with how you would think most superstar players are wired and how competitive LeBron is that by not being in the playoffs he would not want to watch any playoff games. It was the exact opposite. “I didn’t miss one game by the way throughout the whole post season, not one.” said James. Everyone obviously was interested to hear from LeBron on playing with Anthony Davis since he is finally officially a Laker. LeBron spoke about Anthony Davis being the main focus while he is on the floor and being able to play off of him. LeBron said, “We all know how great Anthony Davis is, and if we aren’t playing through Anthony Davis while he is on the floor then it makes no sense to have him on the floor, because he is that great!”
Davis spoke about being able to play off LeBron as well. “I think we will feed off each other tremendously….I think him demanding double teams will open it up for me to more one on ones and single coverage.” One thing that consistent from the two stars along with the rest of the roster and and staff was “The Process”. This team will not be caught up on the hype of this new media and fan made “Lakers vs Clipper” rivalry. Everyone spoke to just taking it a day at a time and not looking further than the first day of training camp.
The only major injury concern outside of Talen Horton-Tucker (right foot) and Jordan Caroline (surgery on his left 5th metatarsal) was that of Lakers third year forward Kyle Kuzma. He had a stress reaction to his left foot while training with USA Basketball this past summer. He is progressing well he says and showed no visible signs that wasn’t the case while walking around Media Day bringing some light heartedness with him taking pictures of his own on a throwback disposable camera that he posted the pictures a few days later on his Instagram page.
Some of the my biggest questions coming from Lakers Media Day would be: How will minutes be distributed with a nice deep roaster of talent? How will Dwight Howard be in his 2nd stint in the Purple & Gold? He definitely looks in good physical condition and has said all the right things as far as being a valuable role player in whatever role that will be. Who starts at Point Guard and Center? One thing is for sure, the Lakers has high expectations again and I’m sure Lebron and the Lakers organization wouldn’t have it any other way. Be sure to download and use your “Observer Interactive” App to see behind the scenes footage from Media Day.