The Los Angeles Lakers are in a tough position right now as they try to build for the future.
That's because players like Andrew Bogut, Julius Randle, Jordan Clarkson, Brook Lopez and others are likely not returning to the team next year as the Lakers pursue big-name free agents this offseason.
Now mired in a five-game losing streak after a loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Friday night, the Lakers are trying everything to get things back on track this year.
According to ESPN.com, the Lakers held a long team meeting prior to Friday's game. Coach Luke Walton said a lot of different things were discussed, but he doesn't think the meeting was that big of a deal:
"It was a long meeting, we talked about a lot of stuff," Walton said. "It wasn't like we had a schedule printed out about how we were going to talk about everything. It went different places and everything was open... we were in there for a while.
"We weren't going to get much done on the court that day anyway. It was a creative way of trying to grow and get better for that day. The amount of questions that are being asked about having a team meeting are a little blown out of proportion the fact that we had one. It was just a way for our group to get together."
With Friday night's loss, the Lakers fell to 11-23 on the season and now are only half a game ahead of the Memphis Grizzlies, who are in last place in the West with an 11-24 record. The road won't get any easier for LA, either, as a game against the Houston Rockets looms on New Year's Eve.
Talented rookie forward Kyle Kuzma said the team meeting wasn't anything out of the ordinary, but rather just gave players a chance to say how they feel and vent frustration about the losing streak:
"We just really had a heart-to-heart," Kuzma said. "We're just trying to get back on the same page. That happens at all levels. It's no different. Every team has problems. Championship teams have problems and whatnot. Meetings are always good. ... But, of course, everybody on the team said something about how they feel."
After the game against the Rockets, the Lakers start the new year at Minnesota before returning home to take on the Oklahoma City Thunder. Therefore, things could get worse before they get better in Los Angeles.