This season could prove to be the most crucial season for the two teams in Los Angeles: the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers. With several newly acquired players for both teams, fans are eager to see how their new rosters will mesh. The two-way duo of Paul George and Kawhi Leonard joining forces with the Clippers to create arguably the best defensive team in the league, they will pose challenges for LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and the rest of the Lakers squad. These two teams are at the top of their game talent-wise, and the Battle for Los Angeles will be riveting this upcoming season.
Battling for Top Dog in Los Angeles
The Clippers and Lakers look like title contenders on paper, but how will these rosters play with each other, and will there be any chemistry issues? Adding several new players to any squad could pose problems on the court. Although injuries are never wished upon, will these rosters be able to stay healthy? Davis has had his fair share of injuries, and James is only getting older–injuries could pose a problem for the Lakers for the second year in a row. Not to mention that George and Leonard have both had season-ending, severe injuries in their time with the league. And how will these teams match up against each other? It’s no secret that both teams have a ton of talent, but how can they use them to be most effective?
Both teams will have their ups and downs to start the season. With the roster for both teams changing so much, it’s hard to play at their peak at the beginning of the season. The two teams will have to feel out what lineups work best, and develop a hierarchy for who gets the ball in late-game situations. For the Lakers, James is the right guy to have. It seems like every day he’s putting on an event for his teammates. Whether it’s going out to dinner, having a team meeting, or doing something as simple as buying clothes for the team–James seems to get it done. But putting on team events isn’t the only way to build chemistry. If the Clippers team doesn’t do something with each other every day, they’ll still be able to figure it out. Playing on the court is the best way to build chemistry. If both teams can stay healthy, chemistry will be at the least of their worries.
The probability, and more importantly, the severity, of injuries is arguably the most crucial part of setting these two teams apart. One injury and it can lead to one team towering over the other. Davis has had his history of injuries. James’ groin injury could be the sign of more injuries to come. Leonard and George have both had serious injuries in their careers. If one of these major players has an injury that causes them to lose significant time, one of these teams could be in big trouble. Everyone saw how losing James plagued the Lakers last year. Injuries to star players can make or break a team’s success. Although each team has a backup star to fall on, losing a superstar could still be brutal. The battle for Los Angeles could prove to be dull if the injury problems flare.
Both rosters run deep and are loaded with talent, but how well do they match up against each other? With the Clippers’ excellent defense, how will the Lakers’ offense combat? The Lakers will have the best pick-and-roll duo in the league, will the Clippers be able to lock them down?
The biggest question the Lakers have is if their team is skilled enough to beat the Clippers’ defense. The Clippers have the top two two-way players in the league, on top of having one of the most hard-nosed players in Patrick Beverley. The Lakers are going to have nightmare games against the Clippers if they can’t get going early. Although the Lakers have talent up and down the roster, the Clippers defense will still pose a challenge.
The biggest threat for the Clippers is stopping Davis. Although they have George and Leonard, both players are too small to guard Davis. Davis is arguably the best big man in the league and is a problem for every person standing in his way. Davis will feast if the Clippers can’t come up with a solid gameplan to deflect him. Even so, the Lakers still have several three-point threats, with newly-acquired guards Troy Daniels and Quinn Cook. The battle for Los Angeles will be the most talked-about event come game-time in Stapes Center.
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