The Los Angeles Lakers assembled an outstanding team for the 2021/22 NBA season, trying to win the championship after a disappointing elimination against the Phoenix Suns in the 2021 playoff.
The front office did a really good job bringing veteran pieces that will enhance the squad's level. They are considered title favorites again, even though they aren't the youngest team of all.
Not everybody believes they can aspire to the championship next year, and not precisely for their age. In fact, one ESPN analyst thinks the Lakers haven't improved from last year regardless of adding good pieces like Russell Westbrook, Carmelo Anthony and Dwight Howard.
Tim Bontemps made a case against the purple and gold in a recent edition of' The Jump (0:53).
"The Lakers are gonna be the most fascinating team in the league this year. But if you're talking about, is this going to change the Lakers' title chances? I think it's nothing. Because you look at this team and I don't think they are better than last year's team. Last year's team had Anthony Davis and LeBron James, and a team that had one of the best defenses in the NBA. They had a real identity. What is the identity of this Lakers team? They need to figure out how Russell Westbrook and LeBron James are gonna play together. I don't think that fit's gonna be great. (...) It's hard to look at this Lakers team and envision how they're gonna play. I just think the fit with LeBron and Russ is gonna be tough. I don't think the defense could be good enough. I just don't think this has raised their championship level the way a lot of people do."
To be fair, people started wondering how this team will play after the Russell Westbrook trade was announced. Brodie and LeBron James can be the team's playmakers, but more fans believe this could create some issues for the squad.
The defense is also an important topic of discussion around the league. Still, the Lakers Nation seems confident that they can get the job done. They added some firepower to the roster. If Frank Vogel can make this team better on the defensive end, the Lakers will have a huge chance to win the title and prove their doubters wrong.