Entering the 2017-18 campaign, most didn't have many expectations for the Lakers.
But with the youth movement in it's prime, L.A. isn't necessarily worried about today... or tomorrow.
Rather, it's the upcoming years that really draw their interest. This year will only help set up their future, by figuring out who it will contain. D'Angelo Russell was thought to be a big piece of that core until he was traded for Brook Lopez. Now, just a few months later, more rumblings are coming out about another Lakers player soon to be departing from the team.
According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, that player is Kentucky big-man, Julius Randle, whom the Lakers drafted in 2014.
Recently demoted to a bench role, Julius' place amongst the young Laker core has never been more in doubt. And with the emergence of Kyle Kuzma and Larry Nance Jr., there may be no more room in the frontcourt for Julius to thrive.
It's not yet known how exactly the situation with Randle will play out. Like Woj points out, the team front-office will have to make a decision. Do they trade him and try to get a first-rounder in return, or do they hold out and wait for the summer, where he will be restricted free-agent?
With so many fascinating storylines this year, this mini-subplot will surely miss out on the front-page. But still, it'll be interesting to see how this dynamic will play out moving forward.