Lakers GM Rob Pelinka learns lesson from watching 'The Queen's Gambit'

The activity served a greater purpose than finding something safe and entertaining to do in the middle of a pandemic. When Los Angeles La...

The activity served a greater purpose than finding something safe and entertaining to do in the middle of a pandemic.

When Los Angeles Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka spent his free nights watching NetFlix’s “The Queen’s Gambit,” he discovered the show taught him more than just how to master chess. It symbolized how to master both the free agency sweepstakes and the NBA’s upcoming season.

“You see the ins and outs of chess and how to study the board,” Pelinka said. “But you don’t know until you play the game and how it’s going to go.”

Likewise, the Lakers have no idea how other moving pieces will pan out in the 2020-21 NBA season.

Can the Lakers defend their NBA championship amid unique circumstances? They are only about two months removed from winning an NBA title on a quarantined site, but do they have enough energy to begin the quest again?

With Lakers star LeBron James defying Father Time with his fourth NBA title and Finals MVP performance at age 35, can he keep his old engine running smoothly? With Anthony Davis winning his first NBA title and first Defensive Player of the Year award, can he win the league MVP both to maximize his greatness and reduce James’ workload?

Forward LeBron James (23) and forward Anthony Davis (3) make the defending champion Lakers the team to beat.

The Lakers navigated a challenging season that included a disrupted training camp in China, a new coaching staff and roster, Kobe Bryant’s death, a suspended season during a pandemic and a resumed season in a bubble. Can the Lakers navigate this season out of the bubble while fighting fatigue and every opponent’s best effort?

“The bull’s-eye just becomes even greater, if that’s even possible,” James said. “For me personally, the bull’s-eye has always been on my back – or my front – since I entered the league. You add in the Laker name on top of that, the Lakers franchise, the bull’s-eye has been on this franchise for a long time as well.”

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Newsrust: Lakers GM Rob Pelinka learns lesson from watching 'The Queen's Gambit'
Lakers GM Rob Pelinka learns lesson from watching 'The Queen's Gambit'
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