clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Podcast: Is it time to rethink the Lakers’ ceiling?

Were expectations for the Lakers heading into this season too high?

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

NBA: Oklahoma City Thunder at Los Angeles Lakers Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Heading into the season, the Los Angeles Lakers were betting favorites to come out of the Western Conference, and right there with the Brooklyn Nets as favorites to win a championship. This week on “The Hook,” Aaron Larsuel took a look at the roster as it currently stands, and wonder whether we were too high on the this team heading into what was probably always going to be a difficult campaign.

First, though, we discussed the allegation of racism, misogyny, and overall toxic culture headed by Robert Sarver with the Phoenix Suns. While the attention has rightfully been on victims of Sarver and those around him while he’s owned the team, a few other people I think deserve some empathy: Those who currently work for him, and were asked to speak for their boss. Any backlash that landed at the feet of players, coaches or executives in the Suns organization who weren’t ready to blast Sarver the day the NBA announced its investigation into him felt misplaced, given the utterly impossible situation they were thrust into, being treated like public shields Sarver could cycle through as proof that he isn’t a disgusting individual.

From there, we jumped into the latest on Ben Simmons and the Philadelphia 76ers. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, Philly has resumed fining Simmons for missing games so long as he doesn’t meet with team doctors to prove that he isn’t making up his own battles against mental illness. This is tantamount to announcing publicly that they think he is making all this up, which sets a pretty gross precedent.

Asking a player who clearly doesn’t trust the organization to prove to team-employed doctors that he is going through some stuff is wrong. Flat out. And if Simmons does prove that he is really dealing with any sort of clinical anxiety, whoever is responsible for pushing him to prove so should probably be fired.

From there, we tried to lightheartedly segue to the Lakers, where I’m starting to have serious doubts about. I know, I know. The sky is falling and all that, but I think given how clear it is that this roster is incredibly flawed and which role players the Lakers are hoping turns things around, it’s fair to be legitimately nervous moving forward.

Because the show was kind of a downer, we wrapped on the infamous Ruben Patterson craps story Aaron has been promising. You won’t want to miss that.

You can listen to the full episode below, and to make sure you never miss a show, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts.

And for a short-form recap pod, check out Lakers Lowdown, in which Anthony Irwin recaps the previous day’s news and gets you ready for the day ahead in LakerLand, every weekday morning on the Silver Screen & Roll Podcast feed.