Los Angeles Lakers head coach Frank Vogel will look to have a solid and consistent starting lineup during the 2021/22 NBA season, but he is still experimenting with different quintets that could start games from the get-go when official games begin.
If the franchise did one thing this summer, it was to sign experienced players, adding Russell Westbrook, Trevor Ariza, Dwight Howard, and Carmelo Anthony, among others.
Vogel spoke about Anthony in a press conference after a team practice, explaining how the 37-year-old veteran can contribute to the Lakers.
“We’re likely going to settle into a hopefully a consistent starting lineup. But we just want to give it a few different looks in the preseason. Carmelo Anthony is going to help us whether we use him off the bench or in starting lineup. He’s just a good basketball player. Obviously he’s transitioned over the last few years his game. I thought what we saw in the third quarter (against the Warriors) with him really committing to the floor spacing and knocking down threes I think that’s going to be his biggest value with this team. But whether he comes off the bench or starts it really doesn’t matter, he’s going to be a factor for us.”
Although the Lakers have yet to win so far in the preseason, losing all five of their friendly matchups, Anthony is looking sharp and is averaging 10.5 points in 17 minutes per game.
He was previously a key player for Portland off the bench, averaging 13.4 points and 3.1 rebounds and with a special ability to open the court, adapting to his role in the same way he plans to do in Los Angeles.
Over the years, Anthony has learned to accept his new role, giving up the limelight, but becoming a very valuable asset for his experience, efficiency, and consistency, especially on the offensive side where he continues to look as good as in his years as a prolific scorer.
Now, with his friend LeBron, he is facing a new challenge, in a team that has the ring as its goal and that could give Carmelo his first NBA championship, something he has been looking for for many years.