The Los Angeles Lakers entered the 2018-19 season buoyed by the acquisition of the NBA’s leading player in LeBron James. However, LA's failure to add a second star quickly came back to haunt them as a combination of injuries and chemistry issues resulted in another losing season.
Evidently, LeBron’s first campaign didn’t transpire as planned, although the Lakers are once again optimistic after a summer of change. By completing a deal for Anthony Davis, the Lakers have finally added a second superstar alongside James, while the roster has also been boosted by the additions of Danny Green and Avery Bradley.
The Lakers also have a new coach in Frank Vogel, while Jason Kidd’s presence is expected to yield a positive impact. The Golden State Warriors' apparent demise has also handed the franchise a huge opportunity in the West, and an impatient fan base expects nothing less than a title.
All these factors make the 19-20 season an exciting one for the Lakers, and here we will look at three players that could be vital to Los Angeles' title aspirations.
#3 JaVale McGee
JaVale McGee started the 18-19 season in the best form of his life, although the veteran spent much of the latter part of the season in and out of Luke Walton's starting lineup. After falling out of favor, few expected the 31-year-old to return, although the Lakers handed McGee a new two-year $8.2 million deal.
McGee appeared likely to play a backup role to DeMarcus Cousins, however, Cousins' season-ending injury will propel the former Nuggets man to the starting lineup. With no reserves on the LA roster, McGee will be tasked with playing the most minutes of his career, and he must maintain focus on the defensive end.
If he fails to do so, the Lakers will be forced to move Davis to the five, something that the franchise wants to avoid at all costs.