Earlier this week, the Los Angeles Lakers held an introductory press conference for their new head coach, Frank Vogel, and while his big day might have been spoiled by the team’s self-inflicted problems, he still managed to hit all of the right notes.
Following his awkward press conference, Vogel got the opportunity to shift the focus back to himself and his new gig in an interview with “The Doug Gottlieb Show” on Fox Sports Radio, and it’s safe to say he’s excited to get started:
“It is really exciting for me personally on some level because of the tradition here, and what this brand and this franchise has meant growing up, but more importantly, quite frankly, is that where we’re at and the opportunity of what we’re going to be able to accomplish over the next three years.
“That’s, to me, the most exciting part of it. It doesn’t matter if they had won any championships, to be in a situation with the current roster and what we can build it in to, it’s an opportunity to win big, and that’s what I’m most excited about.”
Truthfully, Vogel has every right to be optimistic at this stage of his Lakers career. It’s actually really easy to look at the bright side of things when you ignore everything that has happened with the team since they signed James last summer.
Not only do the Lakers have the No. 4 in the upcoming draft, but they have the financial flexibility to pair LeBron James with another All-Star, like Kemba Walker, Jimmy Butler, Klay Thompson, Kyrie Irving or Kawhi Leonard, in free agency. Add that to the fact that they have one of the more exciting young cores in the league and a proven head coach in Vogel, and things don’t sound so bad.
Then you remember who’s running the team.
If a quality executive like David Griffin, Jerry West or even Pat Riley was leading the Lakers into a pivotal offseason, perhaps the fanbase would feel more confident about their chances this summer. Instead, Pelinka will try and recruit All-Star free agents to Los Angeles with the help of team president and controlling owner Jeanie Buss and her advisors, Kurt and Linda Rambis. That group doesn’t exactly scream “basketball powerhouse.”
Could things still go in the Lakers’ favor with those four in charge this summer? Sure, but at this point, it’s hard to be as excited as Vogel is.