Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak spoke with reporters today in advance of the team’s media day on Monday and the opening of training camp on Tuesday. The season for Los Angeles starts and ends with the health of Kobe Bryant, who has quite a few miles on his legs after 18 seasons in the NBA. The talent around Bryant hasn’t improved much over last season, so it doesn’t look like L.A. will need to clear space in the rafters of the Staples Center for another title banner anytime soon.
Here’s what’s happening in Lakerland:
- Kupchak believes that Los Angeles’ current roster can make the playoffs, Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News tweets. When asked if L.A. could contend this year Kupchak said, “Yes we can, Every year, our goal is the same, which is to win a championship.”
- Discussing Bryant, Kupchak said he believed Kobe would perform at the level he did prior to the Achilles injury, Medina notes (Twitter link).
- Los Angeles didn’t snag any big names in free agency this offseason, but not for the lack of trying. Kupchak said he always thought it was a longshot to get either LeBron James or Carmelo Anthony, but did say the Lakers “came close” to nabbing one, according to Medina (Twitter link).
- Kupchak said in regards to LeBron and ‘Melo, “We never felt it was realistic we could get one of the two. But if you don’t try you don’t know,” as Mike Bresnahan of The Los Angeles Times tweets.