After suffering a huge disappointment in the 2018-19 NBA season, the Los Angeles Lakers decided to undertake a huge roster overhaul this summer. They traded three of their young core – Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, and Josh Hart – to acquire All-Star center Anthony Davis from the New Orleans Pelicans and signed quality veterans on the free agency market. While their current roster is mostly consisting of new players, the Lakers also decided to bring back some old faces on their team, including Alex Caruso.
Though they failed to end their playoff drought, Alex Caruso managed to establish an impressive performance in the second half of the 2018-19 NBA season, which made the Lakers decide to give him a two-year, $5.5 million contract in the 2019 NBA free agency. In 25 games, the 25-year-old point guard averaged 9.2 points, 2.7 rebounds, 3.1 assists, and 1.0 steal while shooting 44.5 percent from the field and 48.0 percent from beyond the arc. Despite the presence of Rajon Rondo and Quinn Cook and the possibility that LeBron James will be playing as the starting point guard, Caruso revealed in an interview with Aggie Sports that he was given an assurance by the Lakers that he will get the opportunity to earn playing time next season.
“I’ve been assured an opportunity to get minutes, and I think I complement this team very well, but obviously, nothing is given to you,” Caruso said. “It will be a fun test for me to see how I adjust to playing 82 games. I think I will still be going off of adrenaline.”
After years of being one of the worst NBA teams in the league, the Lakers now have a realistic chance of contending for the NBA championship title in the 2019-20 NBA season. However, their road to the championship won’t be easy as they will be needing to defeat powerhouse teams like the Los Angeles Clippers, Denver Nuggets, Houston Rockets, and the Golden State Warriors to reach the NBA Finals. Still, Alex Caruso expressed strong confidence that as long as they have LeBron James and Anthony Davis on their roster, the Lakers have a “good shot to win” the Larry O’Brien Trophy next season.
“With LeBron James and Anthony Davis, you are going to have a good shot to win,” Caruso said. “If you’re not rebuilding, the goal is to win a championship.”
It’s easy to understand why Alex Caruso is very optimistic about their chances of winning the 2020 NBA championship title. LeBron James and Anthony Davis are considered two of the best active players in the league. Davis is currently in his prime, while James, at 34, still hasn’t shown any significant signs of slowing down. However, though they have one of the most talented rosters in the NBA, the Lakers still have plenty of things to do in the 2019 NBA offseason, including figuring out the right combination of players and how to maximize the potentials of their superstars.