I personally think Kuzma has gone backwards this year and is a huge reason as to why our defence is so poor. He literally only shows up on one side of the court and he really needs to focus on that as the season goes on. Considering he apparently “focused” on his defence this year and went over tape with Rondo in the off-season and was “disgusted” with his defence, he has somehow gotten infinitely worse in that aspect IMO.
Personally I think Rondo has been good so far and is even knocking down shots when the defence backs off of him. He is a great ball handler and a great pick & roll player which suits our game style. He is also a dog on defence. We don’t beat Portland today without Rondo. Plain and simple.
Lance Stephenson has been supreme off the bench also and just seems to fit like a glove in LA. The fans love him and he is playing as well as he possibly could be right now.
Lonzo has also improved but Walton seems to be favouring Rondo a lot more as he does seem to be a coach who prefers to rely on veterans. He barely played Lonzo in the second half even with Rondo in foul trouble which was a bit concerning, but I do think they are still managing him, especially with a back to back against Toronto coming up tomorrow as well which could have played a factor but it was still concerning nonetheless.
Ingram has been hit and miss but I think being suspended did shake him a little bit. He does seem like our second best scoring option behind LeBron but he does need to start having more of an impact over 4 quarters and knocking down his shots with more regularity if he is to maximise his potential.
As much as McGee can ■■■■■ me at times and I still think he could be doing more to protect the rim (he is averaging over 3 blocks a game so far, I know) as he seems to let guys who are half his size go up against him at the rack and it’s like he goes out of his way to not make a play on the ball when he could still get an easy block. He is also a liability in boxing out and grabbing rebounds IMO as well, but he does run the floor really well and had another 6 blocks today with the sealing bucket down the stretch by throwing it over his head over Nurkic which was unbelievable.
All in all, it is coming together slowly but surely.
But as you and I have said, the Lakers can preach the “slow and steady” line as much as they want, the reality is this isn’t the case and they know it, hence Magic turning the screws on Luke already.