What is one of the main reasons for the team's success over the past 15 years or so?
The play of a man named Kobe Bean Bryant.
Bryant, nicknamed "Black Mamba," can score at will and is extremely competitive. More important, though, he's a great leader.
Here are five reasons he's the best leader left in the 2012 postseason.
For 11 seasons in L.A., Bryant played for the legendary Phil Jackson, possibly the greatest coach in NBA history.
Jackson, of course, coached the best basketball player of all time in Michael Jordan during his tenure with the Chicago Bulls.
With that said, Bryant knows quite a bit about the game of basketball and is able to rub that off on his Lakers teammates.
You can label Bryant cocky and arrogant, but one thing's for sure—you can't call him lazy and out of shape.
Bryant is definitely one of the hardest workers in professional sports.
He understands that it takes more than talent to be an all-time great.
Bryant has won five championships during his illustrious career.
That's more than any other player in the '12 playoffs and just one less than Michael Jordan.
Bryant obviously knows what it takes to win. He's been there and done that.
Earlier this season, Bryant was surprisingly benched by coach Mike Brown in a game versus the Memphis Grizzlies.
Instead of badmouthing his coach like many other superstars would've done, Bryant made the following comment after the game:
"It's his decision to make," Bryant said. "He makes the decision. He's the coach. If you guys are looking for a story, I'm not going to give you one. I can't sit here and criticize his decisions. In leading this ballclub, that's something I can't afford to do. I got to have his back. I've had his back the whole season; I can't start doing something crazy now. It wouldn't make no sense.”
Now that's how a true leader reacts.
If you don't believe Bryant is a great leader, then check out this video.
He certainly has the ability to keep his teammates in line.