Lakers in review: Jim Buss hoping Lakers establish young core

Jim Buss, Jerry West

Jim Buss, part-owner and executive vice president of basketball operations of the Lakers, speaks with Lakers great Jerry West, left, during the NBA draft combine in Chicago.

(Charles Rex Arbogast / Associated Press)

The Lakers will begin training camp in just over a month and start the season on Oct. 28 against the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Recently part-owner and executive vice president of basketball operations Jim Buss told The Times he is optimistic about the season, with hopes the Lakers can develop a core of eight young players to build around.

Buss also is looking forward to seeing Julius Randle and D’Angelo Russell on the court and views Coach Byron Scott as the right man for the job.

Earlier in August, the Lakers guaranteed the contract for Jordan Clarkson’s second season and signed forward Jonathan Holmes and guard Michael Frazier to partially-guaranteed contracts. The team also agreed to sign Euroleague veteran guard Marcelo Huertas.


The Lakers have had casual conversations with forward Metta World Peace about making a return to the team.

The NBA announced the 2015-16 schedule, which will send the Lakers out on an eight-game trip in December. The Lakers and Clippers will meet on Christmas Day.

Kobe Bryant has yet to announce his intentions, but the upcoming season may be his final year. Bryant recently returned to the court to begin shooting, after having shoulder surgery in January.

Bryant and former teammate Shaquille O’Neal made up 11 years after their messy breakup.  Bryant may also want to play for Team USA for the 2016 Olympics.


In addition to helping Taylor Swift hang her own banner at Staples Center, Bryant made sure the rookie Russell knows who the “GOAT” is in a conversation over Twitter.

Russell’s peers gave him a 9.7% chance of winning rookie of the year, but voted the Ohio State guard as top playmaker in his class.

The Lakers promoted front-office executive Ryan West to director of player personnel.

Finally, the Lakers’ NBA Development League affiliate D-Fenders hired Casey Owens as head coach. Owens said he’s eager to lead and takes joy in helping players get to the next level.

Email Eric Pincus at and follow him on Twitter @EricPincus.

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