Lakers enter season with offense-heavy lineup

By Sarah Elkeaikati

Way before the purple and gold can fade off the faces of
everyone in Los Angeles, the Lakers are back at Staples Center to
kick off a new season starting today against the Los Angeles
Clippers.

In the four months since the Lakers earned the franchise’s 15th
league championship, plenty of changes have been made to the
team.

Most notably of these changes is the signing of former Houston
Rockets forward Ron Artest.

Artest, who is easily remembered for his outrageous antics
during the brawl at 2004’s Indiana Pacers versus Detroit Pistons
game, signed with the Lakers for $34 million for five years.

Though his belligerent attitude, seen all too often on the
court, makes some Lakers fans nervous, his performance during
preseason proved that he could be an influential presence in
LA.

Artest averaged eight points, four rebounds and 3.6 assists per
game during the preseason and is expected to start during today’s
season opener against the LA Clippers.

Former Lakers Forward Trevor Ariza left Los Angeles and signed a
deal with the Houston Rockets, coincidentally on the same day
Artest was moved to LA.

Several injuries will plague the Lakers early this season.
Center Pau Gasol may sit out today’s opener due to a hamstring
injury that forced him to miss six exhibition games.

Lakers Forward Luke Walton played only three of the seven
exhibition games due to a sore back and center Andrew Bynum has
been recovering from a strained rotator cuff in his right shoulder.
Bynum missed one exhibition game but is expected to start today at
Staples Center.

The Lakers were lucky enough to avoid any serious injuries
during last year’s season.

This time around, they will have to work around the hurdles that
have shown up early in the season.

Reach Sarah Elkeaikati at: sports@thepolypost.com

Lakers enter season with offense-heavy lineup

Courtesy of SI.com

Lakers enter season with offense-heavy lineup

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