Well, Dennis Schröder is getting what he wanted. After making waves when he admitted that he fully expected to start for the Lakers this year after he and his agent discussed it with general manager Rob Pelinka prior to his being traded to Los Angeles, Schröder’s wish has been granted.
According to Dave McMenamin of ESPN, Scrhöder is getting the start as the Lakers open the season against the LA Clippers.
The Lakers will start Dennis Schroder, last season’s runner-up for the Sixth Man of the Year, at point guard in the season opener tonight against the Clippers, sources tell ESPN.— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) December 23, 2020
While this may have been the pairing most of us expected after Schröder just came out and said it, it’s still not one we’ve seen very much of yet. Schröder and LeBron James both sat out games during the preseason, and as a result, only 15 of Schröder’s 48 minutes played came with James on the court, so their fit will make or break this unit. Will Schröder be able to find enough ways to make himself effective without the ball in his hands when James is creating to make this lineup an effective one? Will this pairing allow James to avoid having to create as much as he did for the Lakers last season and help keep him fresher during this expedited turnaround?
Both of the above questions and more are important factors for the Lakers’ success that we won’t be fully able to judge the effectiveness of tonight, but will be worth keeping an eye on as the season moves forward. But as much as people are pushing back on this move, just remember how much having the version of Rajon Rondo that the Lakers got in the playoffs alongside James helped him. If Vogel thinks this can work, he’s earned the benefit of the doubt for at least a few games of it, if not longer. If it isn’t working when it matters, we know he’ll change things up.
Presumably joining Schröder and LeBron will be Anthony Davis, with Marc Gasol seeming like the most likely starting center. It is unknown which two players will join Schröder, James and Davis for certain, though, so we will update this post when Vogel full reveals his starters.
The Lakers tip off against the Clippers at 7:00 p.m. PT, with Vogel scheduled to speak to the media (and presumably reveal his starting lineup) at 5:20 p.m.
This story will be updated with more information as it develops. For more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. You can follow Harrison on Twitter at @hmfaigen.