Report: Lakers believe they can win 50+ games this upcoming season

Peter Dewey
3 Min Read

The Los Angeles Lakers reportedly believe that they can win eight more games than they did in the 2022-23 season.

Los Angeles finished last season with a 43-39 record, and the team earned the No. 7 seed in the Western Conference by way of the play-in tournament.

“The Lakers believe they can be eight wins better than last year, but they’re not alone in optimism,” Bleacher Report’s Eric Pincus wrote.

Los Angeles made some important moves this offseason, bringing back guard Austin Reaves, guard D’Angelo Russell and forward Rui Hachimura who were all integral parts of the team’s run to the Western Conference Finals last season.

The Lakers also added to the roster, signing former Miami Heat guard Gabe Vincent to replace Dennis Schroder (who signed with the Toronto Raptors) in the rotation. The Lakers also added forwards Cam Reddish and Taurean Prince as well as big man Jaxson Hayes.

The team will still need LeBron James and Anthony Davis to stay healthy to truly make a deep playoff run, but the Lakers are much deeper than they were at the start of the 2022-23 season.

Los Angeles’ slow start last season nearly cost it a chance at making the playoffs, but general manager Rob Pelinka really bolstered the roster by acquiring Jarred Vanderbilt, Hachimura, Russell, Malik Beasley and Mo Bamba at the trade deadline.

While Beasley and Bamba are no longer with the team, the Lakers replaced them with cheaper options. Instead of accepting Beasley’s team option (which was for north of $16 million), the team brought in Reddish and Prince for much cheaper deals.

If the Lakers end up winning eight more games than they did in the 2022-23 season, they’d finish with a 51-31 record. The Memphis Grizzlies earned the No. 2 seed in the West last season with that exact record.

After dealing with injuries to James and Davis in recent seasons, the Lakers clearly appear to be valuing depth on their roster to avoid a scenario where one injury derails their season.

Replacing either one of James or Davis is a near impossible task with just one player, so Los Angeles is hoping a plethora of strong rotation pieces will be enough to get the team back to the top of the West in the 2023-24 campaign.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.