Competitive basketball is returning soon with both the Los Angeles Lakers and South Bay Lakers preparing for the 2022-23 season.
The Lakers began training camp on Sept. 27, less than a week before their first preseason game — a matchup with the Sacramento Kings at Crypto.com Arena. After six warmup games, two of which will take place in Las Vegas, the 2022-23 campaign will officially begin on Oct. 18.
Meanwhile, South Bay will tip off another season in the NBA G League on Nov. 5 in a Showcase Cup clash with the Stockton Kings:
— Ryan Ward (@RyanWardLA) September 1, 2022
G League teams will first play 16 qualifying games against teams from the Showcase Cup pods they belong to. Those with the best record in each regional pod, as well as the next four teams across the league with the best win percentages, will advance to the Showcase Cup finals during the Winter Showcase, taking place in Las Vegas between Dec. 19-22.
The Lakers will compete in the West pod against the G League Ignite, Oklahoma City Blue, Ontario Clippers, Salt Lake City Stars, Santa Cruz Warriors and the Kings.
Winter Showcase will consist of a single-elimination tournament to crown the champion. The teams that won’t qualify will play two games outside of the Showcase Cup Championship competition during the event.
After the Showcase Cup ends, team records will reset ahead of the start of a 32-game regular season. The Lakers will open with a back-to-back matchup against the Memphis Hustle on Dec. 29 and 30.
The top six teams in each conference will then advance to the NBA G League Finals, set to take place in April 2023.
The Lakers reportedly need to offer two first-round picks in the Russell Westbrook trade
The Lakers are running out of time to strengthen their roster before the 2022-23 season begins. LA has reportedly set the start of training camp as a soft deadline for a Russell Westbrook trade that would bring back valuable rotation players.
But one of the trade options just closed with the Utah Jazz sending Donovan Mitchell to the Cleveland Cavaliers instead of the New York Knicks — ending LA’s hopes of a three-team deal that would swap Westbrook for veterans from Utah and New York.
It seems inevitable that the Lakers will have to offer their 2027 and 2029 first-round picks if they want to take Westbrook’s $47.1 million salary off the books and bring back multiple rotation pieces.
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