Los Angeles Lakers' 3-Peat Attempt: 7 Lineup Changes That Guarantee the Trifecta
The Los Angeles Lakers have arguably the best starting lineup and bench in the NBA.
Add in the fact they have won the last two championships, and it is safe to say the Lakers' rotation is set in stone, as all the players know their roles and responsibilities.
However, there are few small changes the Lakers could make that would improve their chances even more of winning three straight championships.
7. Play Andrew Bynum More at The End Of Games
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
More times than not, Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom are finishing games for the Lakers. When Bynum returns from injury, the Lakers should consider playing him more with Odom or Gasol at the end of games.
This would save minutes for Gasol and/or Odom and give Bynum confidence playing at crunch time.
6. Play Luke Walton More Minutes
Jeff Gross/Getty Images
By giving Luke Walton more playing time, members of the starting lineup would save minutes for the postseason. Obviously, Walton is not the best player on the Lakers. However, Walton understands the triangle offense as well as anyone.
Therefore, Walton is not a complete liability to have on the court.
5. Play Matt Barnes, Ron Artest and Kobe Bryant Together
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
Very seldom in the first 20 games of the season have we seen Kobe Bryant, Ron Artest and Matt Barnes playing together. The team should consider getting these three players accustomed to playing with one another.
Seeing as these are the team's three best perimeter defenders, they will most likely have to play together at some point during the playoffs—especially if the Lakers play a good perimeter team like Oklahoma City, Boston, Dallas or even Miami.
4. Limit Derek Fisher's Minutes As Much As Possible
Harry How/Getty Images
By limiting Fisher's minutes, the Lakers are not putting themselves at risk of losing games, especially, now that the team has a legitimate backup point guard in Steve Blake.
By resting Fisher now, he will obviously be more rested for the playoffs. Fisher is much more valuable to the team in April than December.
3. Play Ron Artest More With The Killer Bees
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
Currently, Ron Artest is in an offensive slump, still trying to master the triangle offense. Playing him more with Matt Barnes, Steve Blake and Shannon Brown would give him the chance to play with other players who are new to the offense.
This could potentially give him more confidence with his offensive game.
2. Play Derrick Caracter More Minutes
Jeff Gross/Getty Images
By playing Derrick Caracter more, Pau Gasol would not have to log so many minutes early in the season. With Andrew Bynum and Theo Ratliff recovering from injury, Caracter is the only legitimate backup post player the Lakers have.
It would be worth risking the production on the court now by playing Caracter to ensure Gasol is rested and healthy come playoff time.
1. Add Another Big Man To The Roster
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
With Andrew Bynum and Theo Ratliff on the shelf and Pau Gasol's hamstring acting up, the Lakers would be wise to add another post player to their roster. If Bynum and Ratliff stay injured for an extended amount of time, Gasol and Odom will be burned out come playoff time.
Also, an established veteran would make more sense than playing Caracter extended minutes as a rookie.
Why not swap Sasha Vujacic for Jeff Foster?