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Lakers Eying Santa Barbara for Preseason Training Camp

Julius Randle (left) and D’Angelo Russell may be taking their talents to Santa Barbara in order to prepare for the upcoming NBA season. Click to view larger
Julius Randle (left) and D’Angelo Russell may be taking their talents to Santa Barbara in order to prepare for the upcoming NBA season. (LA Lakers Twitter)

The Los Angeles Lakers are looking to conduct their 2016 preseason training camp in Santa Barbara, according to news reports. 

First year head coach Luke Walton may be bringing his Lakers to the local area for their 2016 preseason training camp. Click to view larger
First year head coach Luke Walton may be bringing his Lakers to the local area for their 2016 preseason training camp. (LA Lakers Twitter)

Lakers spokesman John Black told the Orange County Register the move to Santa Barbara is in the works but had yet to be finalized as of Wednesday morning.

Although no venue has been announced, UC Santa Barbara's Thunderdome figures to be at the top of the list of locations.

Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak has a relationship with the university, as his son, Maxwell, is a member of the Gauchos basketball team. Also, former Gaucho star Brian Shaw is the associate head coach of the Lakers.

The training camp will mark the debut of Luke Walton as head coach. Walton and Shaw both won NBA Championships with the Lakers.

The Lakers have a history with UCSB as a team, too. They used to run a youth summer camp there and held a short training camp in January of 1999 after the NBA lockout and prior to the shortened 50-game season.

They team held a mini camp at Westmont during the 1989 playoffs.

The Lakers had previously announced that training camp would be held at their El Segundo practice facility at the Toyota Sports Center.

Last year, the team held its annual media day at home before boarding a plane for training camp in Honolulu, Hawaii.

The team will conduct media day on Sept. 26 in El Segundo before their anticipated camp in Santa Barbara.

The Lakers open their eight-game preseason schedule on Oct. 4 against the Sacramento Kings at the Honda Center in Anaheim and play their first regular-season game Oct. 26 against the Houston Rockets.

Noozhawk sports editor Barry Punzal can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk Sports on Twitter: @NoozhawkSports. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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