With the first week of the regular season in the rearview, Lakers fans have an idea of what the desired rotation for head coach Frank Vogel looks like. But with players bound to pick up bumps and bruises over the course of the grueling 82-game schedule, Vogel said changes to the rotation are also inevitable.
“Until we have a full roster of healthy players, we won’t settle into a regular rotation. We’ll have a rotation based on the guys that are available,” Vogel told reporters after practice last week.
The one thing that will remain constant, health permitting, is the staggering of LeBron James and Anthony Davis. One of the biggest criticisms with the team’s former head coach, Luke Walton, was that he never staggered LeBron James and Brandon Ingram. That hasn’t been a problem with Vogel thus far, and he doesn’t plan on making it one when his team is at full strength.
“Ideally,” Vogel said of whether he intends to regularly stagger James and Davis. “And I think when Rajon (Rondo) comes back, we’ll have the mindset that he can quarterback the offense with anybody that’s out there, but for last night I wanted to try to have one of those guys out there as much as possible.”
It’s not as simple as just keeping James and Davis on the floor, though. Vogel will also have to find out which players fit best around James and Davis when they’re separated. However, he sounds pretty confident in his ability to do that.
“It starts with common sense, and finding guys that naturally fit each other just based on their skillset. And throughout training camp you see guys play together and really develop chemistry,” Vogel said.
The Lakers are expected to have one of their key players back in Kyle Kuzma on Friday, so it will be interesting to see what adjustments Vogel makes to his lineups and which players lose out on playing time.