Lakers Notes: Westbrook, LeBron, Davis, Anthony

Russell Westbrook not only wanted to play in his native Southern California, it was important to him to join the Lakers after being a long-time fan of Kobe Bryant. Westbrook talked about his connections to the late Hall-of-Famer in an interview with Spectrum Sports Net (video link).

“That is something I think about daily. Coming into the gym, you come in here, you look up in the practice facility, you see 8 and 24, and I know he is looking down and making sure that I need to do what I need to do,” Westbrook said. “And that’s the only thing I could think about is knowing, being in this uniform, understanding the impact I can have of being home and being a Laker and creating a legacy not just for myself but for my kids, for the community of Los Angeles, for the people here. I’m gonna make sure I just do my part in going out and playing for him and through him as I complete in this uniform.”

There’s more from Los Angeles:

  • LeBron James sees a renewed energy in training camp stemming from a longer offseason break, according to Dave McMenamin of ESPN. Last year, the Lakers won the NBA title on October 11 and had to report for camp less than two months later. This offseason felt more normal after L.A. was ousted from the playoffs in early June. “Last year after coming off the bubble it literally took everything away from you,” James said. “Any little bit of energy that you had, it was completely gone when we left there. … To come back into the season with the quick start that we had, kind of the life of the party was a little bit, just like, it was just kind of stale. You know, rightfully so. Guys just didn’t have an opportunity to get a mental break.”
  • Westbrook and James will sit out Sunday’s exhibition opener against the Nets, but Anthony Davis will play during the first quarter, McMenamin tweets“AD didn’t finish the season,” coach Frank Vogel explained. “He finished in street clothes because of injury. He wants to get out there, so we’ll support him on that.”
  • Brian Windhorst of ESPN examines why it took so long for James to team up with his long-time friend Carmelo Anthony after both entered the NBA in 2003.
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