Why Anthony Brown Should Start for the Lakers This Season


Anthony Brown has played many roles for head coach Byron Scott so far in the preseason. He started by coming off the bench, then he became a DNP-coach’s decision. Last night, he led the Los Angeles Lakers in minutes. Once the team reaches the regular season, Brown should be starting for the Lakers.

There are two scenarios that are the most likely paths to Brown starting. The first is what the Lakers did in last night’s game against the Sacramento Kings. It’s the idea that was thrown out earlier in the preseason, bring D’Angelo Russell off the bench and start Kobe Bryant in his natural shooting guard spot.

This lineup helps the Lakers with a few things. The most important is that it moves Russell to the second unit where everything would flow through him. This would be more helpful to his development than having him share the floor with Bryant and Jordan Clarkson, three players who all need the ball in their hands to do what they do best.

In addition to helping the development of the Lakers young core, it improves their offense right now. Brown is primarily a 3-and-D wing, someone who provides spacing on offense while letting other guys go to work with the ball.

Having Brown out there with the starters gives Bryant more room to go to work and opens up space down low for Roy Hibbert.  Brown being a 3-and-D wing means he’ll help out on the other side of the court as well.

At his age, Bryant isn’t the defender he used to be. Clarkson has shown some promise on defense but he also makes many little mistakes and has gotten burned a few times so far this year. Hibbert can’t carry a top defense all by himself.

Putting Brown in the starting lineup would immediately make him the best perimeter defender, even as a rookie. He will likely struggle a bit with the transition to guarding NBA players, grown adults, compared to college, but at 22 years old he is a good option for the Lakers.

With Brown on the other teams number one option, Bryant and Clarkson could save their energy for when the Lakers get back on offense, and when Brown is just standing in the corner waiting to hit his shot.

Having Brown join Hibbert against opposing teams best players could give the Lakers a respectable defense league-wide, something that’s been missing in LA for a few years. Toss in the high energy of Clarkson and Julius Randle, plus Scott’s defensive schemes, and the Lakers could actually have a chance at being a top 10 NBA defense.

Bryant could benefit from Brown starting the most, but the other scenario where Brown starts is the one without Bryant.

When Bryant went down last night all Lakers fans where wondering what would happen to this team and this season.

The best move for a Lakers team without Bryant is to hit reset. Develop the young guys who are the future and try to keep that top three protected pick that Philadelphia is holding. This also means starting Brown.

If the Lakers have nothing to play for they need to give all their minutes to the future. Having Russell, Clarkson, Brown and Randle starting would represent the future.

It might be another painful year for Lakers fans but Anthony Brown will help lead them out of the dark, whether this season or in the next few years. To do so he must start for the Lakers now.

What do you think about Brown starting? Let us know on twitter or in the comments.

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