LAST SEASON: (45-37), Lost NBA Western Conference First Round
G – Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant
F – Nick Young, Paul Gasol
C – Chris Kaman
6TH MAN: Steve Blake
KEY ADDITIONS: Jordan Farmar, Wesley Johnson, Nick Young, Chris Kaman
KEY LOSSES: Dwight Howard, Metta World Peace, Earl Clark
FORECAST: The Lakers finally got rid of Dwight Howard and enter a new season with Chris Kaman as their new center. Nick Young was also added over the summer as the Lakers hope Kobe Bryant can make a strong return to keep this team relevant in the West.
Gasol averaged 13 points and 8 rebounds last season, while Bryant added 27.3 points per game. The Lakers trust Chris Kaman to fill in at the center spot nicely with Steve Nash still effective off the screen-and-roll. Nash put up 12 points and 6.7 dimes last season and should have better numbers with Dwight gone from the offense.
The Lakers are still a valid team to find in the postseason whenever Kobe Bryant is on the floor. With Bryant now entering his 18th year in the NBA, the Lakers can still ride their success on his shoulders as he looks hungry for a return from injury. The additions of Nick Young and Chris Kaman will also have to work in their favor if they expect to make it past the first round of the playoffs.