For the Los Angeles Lakers, there is optimism that Anthony will come to Hollywood, but they also have another tough decision to make. Still without a head coach heading into the start of Summer League, the Lakers have more to worry about than just free-agent signings.
In a press conference on Wednesday, Kobe Bryant spoke about both of those situations at the Kobe Academy. Bryant provided his thoughts on Anthony and the potential of one coaching candidate coming to Los Angeles.
Then there's the Summer League, which begins for the Lakers on Friday against the Toronto Raptors. One player from last season is taking it upon himself to step up and lead the team in Las Vegas.
Before any official decisions are made or the Summer League starts, here's a look at the latest news from the Lakers.
Kobe Bryant Comments on Carmelo Anthony
One of the hottest commodities on the free-agent market this offseason might potentially be coming to Los Angeles.
Anthony reportedly met with the Lakers and multiple other franchises last week, and L.A. fans are holding out hope that he'll be in purple and gold next season. As for Bryant, he doesn't have any new information from Melo, per Dave McMenamin of ESPN.com:
Kobe Bryant on Melo: "Everybody is here to read tea leaves ... I don't have any new information"— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) July 9, 2014
Bryant is making light of the situation, but there's good reason to wonder if he has any inside information. Anthony and Bryant were teammates for Team USA and have apparently become close over the years.
Serena Winters of Lakers Nation provides more on their relationship and Bryant's thoughts on Anthony as a Laker:
Kobe on waiting to play with Melo: "Ya, I would love to play [with him] We've really clicked since 2008."— Serena Winters (@SerenaWinters) July 9, 2014
As one of the faces of the franchise over the last several years, it's clear that Bryant's opinion of a player matters. But with a need to look to the future, Anthony would also be a superstar after Bryant's days are over.
If both players are in Lakers uniforms next year and clicking, the franchise might see a quick turnaround. Unfortunately, nothing is certain with Anthony at this point.
Bryant Wants Byron Scott as Head Coach
Bryant has opinions about everything, and the fans want to hear them.
So when it comes to who the Lakers should hire as the next head coach, who better to ask than Bryant for an opinionated response? That's just what reporters got when they drilled him about who the next head coach should be in Los Angeles.
One option is Byron Scott, who has already voiced his thoughts on being the "perfect guy" for the Lakers. As for Bryant's preference, McMenamin passes along his thoughts on Scott:
Kobe on Byron Scott: "He was my rookie mentor ... We've had a tremendously close relationship throughout the years"— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) July 9, 2014
Asked if he wants Byron Scott to be the Lakers coach Kobe says "yep"— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) July 9, 2014
Well, that pretty much seals it from Bryant's standpoint. His former mentor would be perfect for him, but would it be an ideal fit for the future?
That's a question the Lakers will have to ask when officially making the hire. But with the Summer League on the horizon and several important decisions still to be made, the Lakers need a coach they can look to rebuild with.
Though the Lakers have taken their time in identifying the right fit, Bryant's opinion might be the tipping point for one hopeful coach. Getting reassurance from the team's superstar is never a bad thing when it comes to identifying a new leader.
Kendall Marshall Looking to Lead Summer League Team
In between his numerous stops at Chipotle, Kendall Marshall has been working this offseason to keep a spot on the bench with the Lakers.
While he was a key cog for the Lakers last season coming off the bench, Marshall still saw room to grow. The former UNC player spoke about his plans this summer, via Trevor Wong of Lakers.com:
It’s been a long offseason doing a lot of individual work so I’m excited to play 5-on-5 finally and put some of the stuff I’ve been working on into a game situation.
I feel like I still have a lot to prove. For some reason, there’s always a reason why I’m successful or why I’m not successful. So I kind of need to put that doubt to rest and just go out there and prove I can play.
Will Kendall Marshall stay on the roster this season?
The point guard emerged last year as a consistent player, averaging 8.0 points, 8.8 assists and 2.9 rebounds per game after playing in the NBA D-League earlier in the season.
But with players like Jordan Clarkson joining him in Vegas and a potentially healthy Steve Nash, Marshall will need to earn the spot again. The Las Vegas Summer League officially kicks off on Friday, with Marshall once again looking to prove himself.
If last season is any indication of what's to come for the reserve, Marshall simply needs to be consistent again and show why he helped the team last year. Then maybe, just maybe, Bryant will finally #followback.
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