The Los Angeles Lakers roster is built of two factions, basically: the youngsters and the veterans. The dynamic between those two groups has been the foundation of analysis for this team right from the get-go, and now that the season is in full swing, a couple members of the young portion of the roster are looking for ways to pull their weight.
Both Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball have logged decent minutes loads at times this year, and both guys sound like they want that to continue, and found one situation in particular where they can do more: back-to-backs.
“I think all the young guys, back-to-backs we have old guys that need to get some rest, so as much as we can (we should) help them out, get a lead and stay in and let them rest their bodies can help a lot,” Lonzo told reporters after Sunday night’s win against the Atlanta Hawks — which came on the back end of a back-to-back.
I would love to see LeBron James’ reaction in real-time to Lonzo essentially calling him washed (Editor’s Note: This is almost assuredly not actually what Ball is implying). As a fellow washed person, I can definitely relate. Though James at his worst is still capable of things most normal human beings merely dream of.
After the game the other night, Lonzo and B.I. said that the young Lakers have to step up on back-to-backs to make things easy on their veteran teammates.— Harrison Faigen (@hmfaigen) November 13, 2018
Kyle Kuzma echoed that point while speaking with @LakersTalkESPN:https://t.co/z3oZNlP0cf pic.twitter.com/84Lzw4wdl8
Ingram added to Lonzo’s point.
“Absolutely,” Ingram added. “I think we have to take that role. We have to take that and use it to our abilities, just being young and being the running team (we are) on the basketball floor, we have to use that to our advantage.”
Both Ball and Ingram are right, but to a certain extent. At the end of the day, they both have to earn their minutes, but it does makes sense to lean on the kids when minutes get long for everyone. The NBA season is a long one. It takes a team effort to make it through 82 games. In some moments, they’ll lean on certain players — it’s just on those players to earn that responsibility.