Lakers: Best NBA Franchise Ever

Ricky ChanContributor IMarch 19, 2009

The now famous Los Angeles Lakers got it's official name in Minneapolis, Minnesota: "The Land of 10,000 Lakes."


In the Beginning

The Lakers began in 1946 when Ben Berger and Morris Chalfen bought the Detroit Gems for $15,000. The team relocated in the 1947 season to Minneapolis. They had already had a strong roster with Jim Pollard, Herm Schaefer, and George Mikan—who quickly became the most dominant player in the game.

The Lakers won the BAA Championship their first year in the league (1947). They then continued their dominance the following year by winning the Western Division.

In the 1951-1952 season, the Lakers won 40 games—finishing second in its division. They played the New York Knicks in the championship that year and won in game seven. 

With a 48-22 record in the 1952-1953 season, they defeated the Knicks again for their second straight title. In the 1953-1954 season they won their third straight title over the Syracuse Nationals, winning in game seven.


The Players

The Lakers have had some of the best rosters in NBA history. In the 60s, their rosters featured Hall of Famers Jerry West, Elgin Baylor, and Gail Goodrich. In 1968, they acquired Wilt "The Stilt" Chamberlain in a trade with the Sixers.

In the 1974-1975 season, the Lakers traded for Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, the leagues stand out big man at the time. 

14 Hall of Famers have played for the Lakers. With Kobe and Shaq still playing, it will soon be 16. The Lakers hold records for having the most wins (2,905), the highest winning percentage (61.5%), the most NBA Finals appearances (29), and the fewest non-playoff seasons (5 tied with Spurs).

Magic Johnson, Shaq, Kobe, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Jerry West, Wilt Chamberlain, and many other Lakers have all received the MVP award.