by George Angelidis, staff reporter
LA Lakers are battling to start off the 2013-14 season, as they are playing without their superstar Kobe Bryant. They have won 9 out of their first 18 games so far and are really giving it everything they have in order to try and compete with the top teams in their conference.
Kobe Bryant tore his left achilles in mid April in the 4th quarter against Golden State and has been out of action ever since.
The Lakers at the time were battling to make the playoffs and still found a way to make the it as the 8th seed, without their leader, who was averaging 27.3 points, 5.6 rebounds and a career high 6 assists per game which was very impressive [source].
Even though the Lakers were swept by the San Antonio Spurs 4-0, in the first round of the 2013 playoffs, they showed great fight and played fairly well for the most part against the Western Conference champions
It’s was very eventful offseason for the Lakers, with one of their superstars Dwight Howard moving to the Houston Rockets.
“Dwight Howard just didn’t fit in the Lakers, and the partnership with Kobe was simply not going to work out well in my opinion,” senior Nikitas Troumouhis said.
The purple and gold picked up six new players for the new season: Nick Young, Chris Kaman, Jordan Farmar, Xavier Henry, Wesley Johnson, and Shawne Williams. They also drafted two rookies, Ryan Kelly from Duke and Elias Harris from Gonzaga.
The Lakers are 9-9 through the first 18 games of the season as their superstar is on the sideline doing his best Mike D’Antoni impersonation giving pointers to his fellow teammates.
Pau Gasol is averaging 14.3 points and 9.9 rebounds per game. Nick Young who came from the 76ers this year is giving solid production off the bench averaging 14.2 points per game as well.
“Nick Young has has caught my attention. He’s like a mini Kobe because he can create his own shot, and makes the Lakers a much more offensive minded team [even] without their scoring leader Kobe Bryant,” senior Peter Ikariou said.
Kobe has just recently began practicing again after months of rehab after the surgery on his ankle. Kobe said he sees himself returning to action sometime in early December after his ankle gains some more strenght. Kobe’s return will surely help out the Lakers in their playoff run for the 2013-14 season.
“The Lakers will be better when Kobe returns, it will take some time however. He has some new teammates that he has to get comfortable playing with as well, and eventually have to trust,” gym teacher Mr. Angeles said. “[However] I don’t think he he will, because he is Kobe Bryant and at the age of 35, he still wants to carry the team in search of that 6th ring.”