The key to the Lakers proving that last year’s dud was just a fluke revolves around Anthony Davis.
LeBron James and his agent Rich Paul met with Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka and head coach Darvin Ham, and the two parties had what is being called a “productive” conversation.
According to Yahoo Sports, James and Ham agreed that getting back to the playoffs is dependent on the offense running through Anthony Davis. The team has seen progress in Davis’ conditioning and expects him to be able to carry a heavy load next season.
There is also an agreement that players need “accountability,” they need to develop “selflessness,” and there needs to be more heart and hustle from the defense, according to the report.
There were talks of James’ ability to sign a two-year, $97.1 million contract extension, but the 37-year-old was reportedly more focused on getting the Lakers franchise righted for next season.
James is going into his 20th NBA season and his fifth as a Laker. He averaged 30.3 points, 8.2 rebounds, and 6.2 assists per game last season. Davis averaged 23.2 points, 9.9 rebounds, and 3.1 assists per game, though he only played in 40 contests.
The Lakers ended the season 33-49 and without a playoff berth, a reality they will hope to escape in 2022-23 with a new offensive strategy focused around Davis.
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