The Los Angeles Lakers have had a poor season this year, only finishing 33-49 in the regular season, and missing the play-in tournament, and by extension the playoffs. The team had championship aspirations at the beginning of the season, so this was clearly disappointing for everyone involved with the team.
There has been a lot of discussion about whether the Los Angeles Lakers can still be a championship-contending team next year. When speaking to Bill Plaschke of The Los Angeles Times, governor Jeanie Buss expressed confidence that the Lakers could win a championship with LeBron James and Anthony Davis as "their cornerstones", though she declined to speculate about Russell Westbrook's future.
Buss would not speculate about how Westbrook fits into that roster, saying, “Having a conversation like that is premature. We have to now find the right coach to lead this team. Depending on the style of play that that coach wants to play, given the roster that we have, it all has to start to come together.”
It is also clear that if James wants to leave the team, either this summer or after his contract expires next year, it will be of his own volition. Buss wants to keep him happy enough to remain a Laker and is excited about him breaking Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s scoring record next season.
“I want him to feel confident in the team, that we have the pieces to win a championship,” Buss said. “He has to be happy. … I want to make sure that he’s happy.”
Besides, she believes the Lakers can win another championship with James and Anthony Davis as their cornerstones.
“There’s no reason for me to think we can’t win with them,” she said. “Something that I learned from Phil Jackson is that there’s always a path to success. … Sometimes it might be a little bit harder than other times, … but you have to see the ability.”
It remains to be seen what sort of moves the Los Angeles Lakers make to put a competitive team around LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Rob Pelinka has previously refused to rule out a Russell Westbrook trade and added that the team would look under "every stone" to find ways to improve.
Hopefully, we see the Los Angeles Lakers find a way to get back to being a championship team. It's definitely not going to be easy to do so. However, they have the stars needed to do so on the roster, and if they make a few upgrades at various positions on the team, then we could potentially see the Los Angeles Lakers become an elite team once again.