LeBron James at point with Anthony Davis at center, is this Lakers closing lineup?
At the end of practice Friday, Lakers’ coach Frank Vogel wanted to run some late-game situations with his team.
The lineup had LeBron James at the point and Anthony Davis at center.
It’s the pick-and-roll combo — surrounded by whoever proves to be the Lakers’ best shooters — that has Lakers’ fans drooling and the rest of the league on edge. They could be the most dangerous pick-and-roll tandem in the league because of LeBron’s decision making and Davis’ versatility as a shooter or roll man. It has to be the core of the Lakers’ closing lineup. That combo was hit-and-miss Friday against the Laker reserves (that’s why training camp exists), according to Dave McMenamin of ESPN. But it still turned heads.
Of course, the Lakers played it down.
LeBron is right, this is why practice exists... and we know that at the end of the game this is the combo Vogel will lean on. As he should. (At this practice the three around them were Alex Caruso, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Avery Bradley, according to ESPN.)
LeBron, for his part, was preaching positionless basketball.
The Laker rotations are a work in progress, as are how the ends of games work. Those experiments will go on into the regular season, chemistry and combinations that work are not formed overnight.
But if we don’t see a heavy late game dose of one-five pick-and-roll with Davis and LeBron the Lakers are doing it wrong.