Lakers moving ahead on planned training center in El Segundo
The Lakers took an expected, but important, step in the development of their new training facility, receiving preliminary approval from the El Segundo City Council last week to keep moving ahead with their plans.
A final vote will be taken in June. The team hopes to break ground in October and finish its planned $80-million complex in the summer of 2017. The facility will be located on a five-acre parcel within a quarter mile of the Lakers’ current location. The team will no longer share a building with the Kings and a trio of ice-skating rinks sometimes open to the public.
Since 2000, the Lakers have been at the place currently known as Toyota Sports Center, built for about $24 million by Anschutz Entertainment Group.
There is only one basketball court at the center and the team long ago outgrew its office space. Several departments, including marketing, ticketing and community relations, are located at a different building down the street.
The Clippers’ relatively new training facility is only five miles away in Playa Vista and represents everything the Lakers want — two basketball courts, plenty of executive offices and enviable video and weight rooms in 42,500 square feet.
The Lakers’ minor league affiliate, the L.A. D-Fenders, will also be based out of their new complex. The D-Fenders currently play home games at Toyota Center.
Lin officially done
Jeremy Lin’s first — and only? — season with the Lakers officially ended Sunday, Coach Byron Scott said.
Lin will have missed the final five games because of a sore left knee, which is not expected to require surgery.
Scott recently acknowledged Lin’s season was “up and down” but spoke more highly of him Sunday.
“I think he’s obviously gotten better. When he first got here, his mind of what a point guard is was totally different than mine,” Scott said. “As we went along, he started to understand what I wanted on a day-to-day basis.”
Lin, 26, was in and out of the starting lineup this season and averaged 11.2 points while shooting 42.4%, numbers slightly below his career averages. He will be an unrestricted free this summer and faces a fairly steep pay cut from the $14.9 million he made this season.
“The one thing about him, the kid takes criticism,” Scott said. “You can jump on him about things. He takes them with a grain of salt and tries to get better. That’s the one thing I do love about him. He doesn’t pout about it, doesn’t cry. He just goes out there and tries to implement the things that you give him, and tries to be a better basketball player.”
The Lakers will receive Houston’s first-round pick as part of the Lin trade last July. A surprising amount of positioning is still taking place in the Western Conference as the regular season winds down, but the pick is conservatively expected to be in the mid-20s.
The Lakers were left with only two healthy guards when Dwight Buycks sustained a broken right hand in the 120-106 loss Sunday to Dallas. Buycks’ 10-day contract was set to expire after the game, and it was unclear if the Lakers would sign a third guard to support rookie starters Jordan Clarkson and Jabari Brown for Monday’s game at Sacramento.
The Lakers’ season finale is Wednesday against Sacramento at Staples Center.
LAKERS VS. KINGS
When: 7:00 p.m. PDT.
Where: Sleep Train Arena, Sacramento
On the air: TV: TWC SportsNet, TWC Deportes; Radio: 710, 1330.
Records: Lakers 21-59, Kings 27-53.
Record vs. Kings: 1-1.
Update: Sacramento recently shut down All-Star center DeMarcus Cousins because of a lingering ankle injury and high-scoring forward Rudy Gay because of persistent concussion symptoms. The Lakers end their season Wednesday with a home game against the Kings.
Times correspondent Eric Pincus contributed to this report.
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