NBA fans are at the point of the summer where basketball can’t return soon enough. This is especially true for most fans of the Los Angeles Lakers, and they aren’t the only ones who are ready for the start of the season.
“I was just telling our coaches that, ‘man, it's been a long offseason,’” Lakers forward Julius Randle told Mike Bresnahan of Time Warner Cable Sportsnet. “Not making the playoffs, not even really being able to compete for the playoffs was frustrating. So it's been a long offseason and I'm tired of drills and practice and ready to get to the real thing.”
Other than how long the Lakers have had off, additionally leaving Randle rearing to go is his excitement to play for Los Angeles’ overhauled coaching staff. The third-year forward said the new coaches brought a “new environment” and “different energy” and it sounds like they’ve helped motivate him to grow his game.
“Just playing as hard as I can, trying to get into top shape, playing with a lot of energy and motor and stuff like that,” Randle said when asked what he was working on this summer. “Just playing unselfish. Moving the ball, open man gets the shot, playing for each other rather than playing for ourselves.”
The Lakers overhauled culture has at the very least led to a consistent message from the team, as Randle’s comments outlined similar team goals to the ones Jose Calderon shared with Bresnahan. They likely won’t lead to a ton of wins this season, but like Randle, Lakers fans should just follow Randle’s lead and be happy for the opportunity to watch their young core grow on the court again.
All quotes transcribed via Time Warner Cable Sportsnet. You can follow this author on Twitter at @hmfaigen.