Los Angeles Lakers: Why Rajon Rondo’s injury doesn’t impact title hopes

(Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)
(Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) – Los Angeles Lakers
(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) – Los Angeles Lakers /

2. Dion Waiters can replace Rajon Rondo on the Los Angeles Lakers without skipping a beat

The Los Angeles Lakers are absolutely the most interesting team heading into the Orlando bubble. Not only are they legitimate title contenders, but they have so many x-factors on the roster that could either be great or fall flat on their face.

Most notably is Dion Waiters and J.R. Smith. Waiters has four games under his belt this season and Smith last played in November 2018. Ironically, the two were flipped in a trade during LeBron’s second tenure on the Cavaliers and now find themselves as potential difference-makers between winning a title and falling short.

Waiters was brought in right before the NBA’s hiatus and even then, Laker fans were touting him as being a potentially better version of Rajon Rondo. The reason being that Waiters can do the same facilitating in a secondary role like Rondo while also offering more off-ball versatility.

And while we are still yet to see Waiters in action, he definitely is talented enough to, at the very least, give the Lakers the eight minutes of facilitating without LeBron James on the court.

Not only that, but he can fill in the extra minutes where Rondo was going to play alongside James and be a much better off-ball fit as he is a much better three-point shooter than Rondo.

It is a relatively small role that Waiters has to fill and he might end up being a better fit style-wise than Rondo has been. And even if he is not as efficient as Rondo, he will be good enough to give the Lakers those eight minutes they will need.