By Sabreena Merchant
After an offseason that was endlessly dissected by local and national media alike, the Lakers had the unfamiliar weight of expectations upon them entering the preseason.
No one determines the success of preseason solely on outcomes, but there are markers of individual growth and lineup chemistry that each team hopes to see as they prepare for the games that really matter.
The Lakers, more than most teams, had a ton of questions about what the on-court product would look like after acquiring LeBron James and three new free agents, and jettisoning the bulk of their frontcourt from a year ago. Therefore, it’s unfair to have expected Los Angeles to look like a finely-tuned outfit right out of the gate. But, it is worth considering if the Lakers have shown enough in the preseason to offer hope they'll be contenders this year.
Let’s start with the offense.
Boy, is it fun to watch the Lakers run. Los Angeles started 19.5 percent of its plays in transition last season, most in the league, and this was before adding LeBron James and Rajon Rondo. Silver Screen & Roll’s Alex Regla has written about how both Rondo and James will bolster the team’s transition game, and the preseason has borne that out....