Los Angeles’ decision to trade for Russell Westbrook helped assemble the team’s big three, but also made the Lakers old. Mind bogglingly old.
As it stands right now the Lakers signed roster has an average age of 32.4 years old after signing Carmelo Anthony and Malik Monks, making it not only the oldest in the league — but one of the oldest of all time. That could move down slightly more, should restricted free agent Talen Horton-Tucker re-sign with the team they would still have an average age of 31.4, older than the 2015-16 Spurs, who had Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili and Andre Miller, all born in the 1970s.
This makes the Lakers the powerhouse team of 80s kids, and I love it. Perhaps the most stunning element of this old team situation is that the Lakers don’t have a single player on their roster who was drafted in the first round by the organization. Many y oung players were given up to acquire Anthony Davis, then more with Westbrook — which led to this elderly movement.
Now, if we’re to compare to last season there were six teams (Spurs, Pelicans, Timberwolves, Thunder, Knicks, and Pistons) last season with an average age of less than 24, meaning the Lakers are almost a full decade older.
Of course, this is no indication the team will fail, it’s just really wild. The 96-97 Bulls were DEFINITELY an old man team, all things considered. Not only did they have Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, and Dennis Rodman, all in the 30s, but they had 43 YEAR OLD ROBERT PARISH ON THE ROSTER. Those Bulls had an average team age of 30.06, still much younger than the prospective Lakers, thanks to their rotational players and deep bench.
So, if you’re looking for a team to root for in the NBA in 2021-22 and you’re an old who is bitter about the aging process, then you might want to consider watching the Lakers. They might just make you feel young again, or at least make you believe that olds can do anything. Albeit spectacularly in shape, elite olds.