Well training camp has not even started and the jokes have worn thin on Lakers coach Frank Vogel. This past offseason the Lakers acquired Russell Westbrook, all of 32 years old. They also signed aging big men Dwight Howard (35) and DeAndre Jordan (33). Rajon Rondo also came back to LA, who is also 35 years old. Trevor Ariza at age 36 has also returned to LA for the first time since 2009. Of course these newcomers (and returning Lakers) are lead by their 36 year-old superstar LeBron James.
Lest we forget, the Lakers also recruited Carmelo Anthony who is still spry at a geriatric (by NBA standards) 37 year olds. Yes, it's clear these Lakers are filled with players past their primes.
Vogel appeared on the LakeShow podcast (via Spectrum Sportsnet) and was asked the question about it by Allie Clifton and Chris Geeter McGee. Clifton asked, "How many times have you been asked the question, 'is your team old?'" Vogel's response was to the point.
“I’m not asked, I’m told that we’re old...I don’t really like the narrative. I don’t. These guys can play. We have great players on our team. Yes, some of them are towards the end of their career. But, they’re still producing at a high level. If you’re producing at a high level, it doesn’t matter how old you are.”
Many players have also commented that they are not worried about the Lakers age, and it's clear Coach Vogel isn't either. There are clearly going to be challenges, such as keeping healthy and making sure the rotations are getting some of the older players the rest they need. Still, it isn't just older players who are at risk of injury. Staying healthy isn't solely contingent on age. It's on preparation.
The talent is there for the Lakers. In fact, there is more talent on this Lakers roster than there has been in a long time. Coach Vogel seems more interested in that than their age.