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Stephen A. Smith On The L.A. Lakers: "They Are Not The Front Runners, That Would Happen To Be The Brooklyn Nets."

Stephen A. Smith On The L.A. Lakers- "They Are Not The Front Runners, That Would Happen To Be The Brooklyn Nets."

After a disappointing finish in the 2021 season, the Los Angeles Lakers were in need of some serious reinforcements.

And now, following a slew of big acquisitions, it's fair to say they have more than enough to go out and win it all next season. Besides LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the Lakers roster includes Russell Westbrook, Dwight Howard, Carmelo Anthony, Rajon Rondo, and Kent Bazemore (among others).

Still, despite all they've done this offseason, ESPN's Stephen A. Smith isn't convinced they're the frontrunners.

Here's what he said in a recent episode of First Take:

“The Los Angeles Lakers are not the front runners, that would happen to be the Brooklyn Nets,” Stephen A. said. “That being said, I fully expect the Lakers to meet them in the NBA finals. And how will they come together? It’s very, very simple. LeBron James is one of the top two players on the planet. AD is one of the top five players on the planet. Russell Westbrook is a superstar and that three-headed monster, along with some of the pickups, Carmelo Anthony, Malik Monk. People like that, they are built for the postseason.”

In terms of firepower, no two teams are more equipped than the Lakers and Nets, who are stacked with veterans, Champions, and All-Stars (both current and former).

In the East, only Milwaukee and Boston could even hope to compete against the Nets, who have surrounded their big three with Joe Harris, Patty Mills, Blake Griffin, and LaMarcus Aldridge. If they stay healthy, it's hard to imagine they don't reach the Finals.

For the Lakers, their revamped roster has raised a lot of eyebrows, and for good reason. On talent alone, it's enough to be considered a superteam.

Perhaps the biggest red flag for the Purple and Gold, however, is the durability of their players. Besides Anthony Davis and his history of issues, they have a team comprised of older guys, who might have trouble staying healthy for the duration of an 82-game season.

We'll see soon enough if they have what it takes.