FRIDAY JULY 28, 2017
 
Blog SPORTS EXTRAS
LUKE WALTON'S LOS ANGELES LAKERS OFF TO A GREAT START
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The Los Angeles Lakers pride themselves as having played among the nine games that broke the historic win for Golden State Warriors. This was characterized by 73 unbeaten games in the 2016-2017 season to set a new record. That is the reason why it came as a surprise when the Los Angeles beat them by 20 points in the Staples Center on Friday night. Such games are what redefine betting lines. 

It would surprise a majority of people if the Los Angeles Lakers were to make it to the playoffs this season. That feat would definitely make Luke Walton coach of the year. Furthermore, it would make the Lakers easily become the 7th or the 8th seed and that would result into a fan series against the Golden State Warriors. Of late, hope is well and alive in the Laker’s team.

The success of the Lakers in the court this season literally depends on their young blood players. Veterans of the team have an impact but not as the team’s young core. The 19-year old center from Croatia called Ivica Zubac is a promising player but will not play in important games in this season as he is a rookie. Nonetheless, he is Timofey’ substitute whenever he is not on the court. 

Regardless of whether the Lakers make it to the playoffs or not, Luke Walton deserves to be rewarded as he continuously motivates both young and old men to redefine the game to the surprise of many.

Young is undoubtedly the ideal example of Luke Walton as he has the ability of completely changing a player in just a short time. He is only 31 years old and has played in the NBA for a decade. However, Young is still as fresh and lethal as ever as he still plays with the agility of a young man. With the guidance of Walton, Young is performing at a higher level than he did in both of his seasons with team. His game is characterized by solid defense and is the starting lineup for the NBA.

Marveling at the transformation that Young has had tends to obscure the exceptional performance that William has portrayed thus far in the team’s defense. His role in the team is that he is an efficient play maker and a point guard. His performance is what has put Clarkson on the bench.

Williams is a potential for the Sixth Man of the Year award but if the Lakers qualify for the playoffs. Randle deserves to be honored with the award for Most Improved Player if he can sustain his current play. He is shooting is at an unbelievable 60% from the field and is dangerously close to a double-double. This is complimented by enhanced defense.

Walton has generally done a wonderful job with all the young stars at Lakers. Furthermore, Russell tends to gush over his team coach at every chance he gets. The relationship William has had with the team coach has suddenly taken an abrupt change to the negative since the coach was changed.

Both Nance and Randle appear contented to work under the allotment minutes by the coach. This is because there was no one player who averages a mere thirty minutes per game. The trusting and bold nature of Walton and his team was displayed when they decided to utilize Young as a starter. It is incredible that Young and Russell currently share a team. This is because they could not stand each other’s presence in the past season. Both Young and Walton are responsible for repairing the broken relationship.

Walton has technically improved the team’s defense as seen by forced turnovers and making the most of mistakes. Their offense is good as well. Walton has improved the team in every way imaginable. 19-year old Ingram who was the second pick in the Lakers 2016 NBA draft is already delivering especially in defense. He has since become a force to reckon with from the Lakers. Ingram’s height makes up for his lack of mass. The skill, understanding and talent that Walton saw in him improves by the day.

The point forward concept reaches the starting unit as well. Randle handles the ball up the court to leave the shooting guard role to Russell. This interchangeability is beautiful and modern. Walton has indeed returned the Lakers on the road to recovery and is accelerating the process as well.

The team has embraced the concept of changing roles on the both court ends. Their capability of laying multiple positions allows the team to have greater confidence. Walton capitalizes on this by using the players for several combinations.

Just two weeks in the current season and Walton is already performing. Sunday will be the determining factor if they are truly on a war path to the 2016-2017 playoffs or not. All in all, they are a team to watch this season.

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