The Los Angeles Lakers have won seventeen titles in their history, tied for most with the Boston Celtics. Six of them have come in the 21st century, and no team has won more championships than them in this century with San Antonio Spurs who are second in that list with four trophies. They have seen a lot of success in the current century, starting with the Shaq and Kobe duo that led them to three titles in a row or a three-peat between 2000-2002.
Their partnership is considered to be one of the greatest in the history of the sport to this day and leading a team to three consecutive championships is no easy task in this era. In 2004 Shaq was traded to Miami Heat and that is when Kobe Bryant showed that he can do it without Shaq. Between 2008-2010 they reached three finals in a row and won two of them. That was Kobe’s fifth title which cemented his place in the all-time greats of this league. His last years were not great with the Lakers as they struggled to reach the playoffs with them and that is when the downfall of the Lakers started. They even finished last in the 2015-2016 season in the western conference, which was the last season of Kobe Bryant.
Modern Era Lakers
The Lakers and their fans were not used to these finishes, so they brought in Lebron James in 2018 but the Lakers still finished outside the playoff spot. Their whole team needed to rebuild not just one or two positions. Anthony Davis joined the Lakers in 2019 and along with his and James’s heroics led them to their seventeenth title, which equaled them to the Boston Celtics. After winning the title they were also considered favorites by sportsbook review websites for the next season but they finished seventh in the west conference. They were eliminated in the first round by the Phoenix Suns.
Lebron and Davis missed many games that season but this just showed that the 2020 title was more of a trophy for Lebron and Davis rather than for the Lakers. Next season, the Lakers came with many expectations and were in the top two by the bookies to go on and win the whole thing. Davis and Lebron were expected to carry them again but as basketball is a team sport, individuals alone can only win games but not the titles. They finished outside the play-in spot in eleventh, and that season is considered one of the most disappointing seasons.
After the high times, the Lakers also needed to be prepared for the low times, they should have started the rebuilding of the squad a lot sooner so that they could have had a team that always at least challenged for the title rather than not making the playoffs. The decline and retirement of the late Kobe Bryant hurt them a lot and they are still trying to recover from that.