Los Angeles Lakers basketball is back as the team takes on the Los Angeles Clippers in the first preseason game of the season.
The Los Angeles Lakers won the NBA Championship two months ago and are already back in action as they take on the Los Angeles Clippers in the first preseason game of the season.
The NBA season officially begins on December 22 but this is still our first look at the new-look Lakers that Rob Pelinka constructed this offseason. LeBron James and Anthony Davis will not play, and the minutes will be limited, but we still get our first real look.
We won’t learn anything definitive about either team in the first exhibition game of the season. However, here are three things we are intrigued to watch.
1. Kyle Kuzma’s progression on the defensive end
Based on how the roster is currently constructed, Kyle Kuzma is likely going to be the team’s number one wing option off the bench. Now, when Kuzma is playing at his best and hitting his shots, this is a really interesting fit.
However, as a whole, this might not be a fantastic fit for Kuzma. Kuzma has not been a good defender thus far in his career and if he is going to fit into this rotation and get a second contract from the Los Angeles Lakers, then he has to show progression on the defensive end.
One-way players are not great in the NBA Playoffs, especially when that player is inconsistent on the one end that they are supposed to be proficient in. Kuzma’s game is not going to completely transform in two months but we have to see a bit more consistency out of him, particularly on the defensive end.