Lakers Rumors: Los Angeles Should Stay Patient as Team Approaches Full Strength

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJanuary 18, 2013

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 15:  Jodie Meeks #20, Pau Gasol #16 and Steve Blake #5 of the Los Angeles Lakers watch play from the bench during a 104-88 Laker win at Staples Center on January 15, 2013 in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

The season for the Los Angeles Lakers has not gone according to plan. However, this does not necessarily mean that changes must be made.

After acquiring Dwight Howard, Steve Nash and others during the offseason, the team is still far outside of a playoff spot after almost half of the NBA season.

Although head coach Mike Brown was fired after just five games, there have not been any major changes to the roster itself, despite the current struggles. It looks like that will continue.

According to Mark Medina of the Press-Telegram, it seems like the current squad is the one that will have to come out of this mess:

Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak sounded skeptical about making a deal before the Feb. 21 trade deadline.

"We don't have many options," Kupchak said Wednesday at the Lakers All-Access event at Staples Center, hosted by the LA Sports & Entertainment Commission. "It's not like we're going to be active or overly active in the trade market."

Kupchak wants to exercise patience considering the team's injuries and D'Antoni lacking a training camp.

That last part is the biggest key to explaining this season. One reason that the squad has not been successful is that the team expected to compete has not been on the court for too long this season.

In the preseason, Dwight Howard and Kobe Bryant missed a number of games that could have been used to get more comfortable on the court.

When the season began, things just got worse. Steve Nash got hurt in the second game and missed almost two months. Pau Gasol has dealt with multiple injuries throughout the year, most recently struggling with a concussion.

Howard also missed a week of play recently due to shoulder issues. 

Only Bryant has started in every one of the team's games this year, and that is not easy after 16 years in the NBA.

However, the team looked like it was supposed to against the Miami Heat on Thursday night. Even though Gasol came off the bench in his first game back, the super team that was built this offseason was finally all in uniform.

The good news for Los Angeles is that there are still a lot of games remaining in the regular season. There is plenty of time for the Lakers to dig themselves out of their current hole.

For this reason, there is no reason to panic. As Mitch Kupchak stated, the team is not going to be active at the trade deadline.

In reality, it would be difficult to imagine getting a better addition than a healthy Gasol, Nash or Howard. These players returning to full strength is basically the same as acquiring someone in a trade.

While the general manager could make a blockbuster trade that would break up the current roster and bring someone new in, there is no guarantee that it would be any better. Instead, it would be a smarter decision to take a wait-and-see approach.

It is understandable that the organization does not want to fall too far behind if a move is on the table. However, there is no one on the trading block for a reasonable price that would help the team more than the current players can.

There is an incredible amount of talent on the Lakers. While things have not gone well to this point, a healthy squad should be better.

This fact should keep the front office mostly inactive through the trade deadline.