HomeBasketball ZoneNew Lakers Guard Addresses Starting, Makes Strong Admission About Coach Frank Vogel
New Lakers Guard Addresses Starting, Makes Strong Admission About Coach Frank Vogel
January 11, 2021
Los Angeles Lakers guard Wesley Matthews is getting used to the new environment. He was given a bench role, but Lakers head coach Frank Vogel gave him a chance to start the game against the Chicago Bulls. Anthony Davis and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope sat out the game.
The newly-acquired Lakers player went 4-for-8 from the 3-point line. He tied his season-high with 14 points. It takes more time for Matthews to get adjusted to his new role as a bench contributor. Matthews praises Vogel for his help and support. Let’s not forget he is someone who has been in the league for 12 seasons and 7 different teams.
According to the guard, Vogel is the best communicator as a coach he has ever had.
“He communicates very well about whatever is going on in his lineup, whatever he’s thinking,” the guard said. “So, that gives you comfort. When you know when you’re coming in, when you’re coming out, you can start usually preparing yourself and you can get ready and then you can start watching the game a little bit differently. He’s a great communicator so far with me and that really helps my curve here.”
Lakers guard Matthews is getting acclimated to his bench role
Vogel may not give Matthews a chance to start games this season. In his first four games, Matthews scored eight points and missed all 8 of his 3-pointers. However, he did much better in the last six games. He was averaging 8.8 points while shooting 51.6 % from the 3-point line.
Matthews will nees more time to accept his bench role. He has started 729 of 791 games. He was coming off the bench in Portland in 2011. It’s a big challenge, but Matthews is ready for it.
“You’ve been doing something one way for a decade, kind of getting used to that, you kind of develop habits, develop routines,” Matthew said. “I just take it all in stride. This year has been an unconventional year all across the board, so if there was a time to come off the bench, I think it would be now where everything is an adjustment. Daily life I an adjustment, so it kind of just fits with the mold of how everything is going right now.”
Matthews is ready to win
Coming off the bench affects players differenly. Matthews is an excellent defensive player. Being a bench player makes it hard for him to step in a game.
“I get myself going on the defensive end, so as a starter obviously I’ve always been paired with whoever the best player on the other team is so that already instantly engages me in the game. So coming off the bench, it’s just finding different ways to stay engaged, stay ready, get my body ready and most importantly, I’m coming in guarding one of the Top 2 scorers and they’ve already got a flow and they’ve already got their body going and I’m fresh off the bench. So, it’s mental, it’s physical and it’s going to be an ongoing adjustment.”
Lakers players have a long way to go, and the first ten games were a good warm-up for the team.
Radmila graduated with a degree in Translation & Interpreting. She is an NBA and NFL writer for The Ball Zone, and has been covering popular sports topics for several years. A loyal Lakers fan, she puts energy into reporting big roster moves, potential trades, on-court-accomplishments, and off-court rumors.