I rank my 10 greatest Los Angeles Lakers of it's rich history. The City of Angels has been blessed with its star studded basketball team. The nation of Purple and Gold is the greatest basketball franchise in the world. No team has as much superstars as the LA Lakers. The Lakers all time list could contend with the rest of the NBA all time stars. The star-power of the Los Angeles Lakers is the reason for its large fanbase across the world. Magic, Kareem, Kobe, Wilt, Jerry, Elgin, Shaq, and many other superstars have contributed to the on-going resume that many consider the greatest team in NBA History. The Los Angeles Lakers, are certainly a spectacle.
Many people disagree about Pau Gasol in the top ten Lakers of all time, but you have to give him credit. The Los Angeles Lakers were struggling after Shaq, and before Pau. They failed to make the playoffs, and then lost the next ones in the 1st round. Pau Gasol changed that and helped the Lakers to two NBA Finals appearances, one NBA Championship, and maybe more in the future. Not to mention he helped revive the greatest franchise of basketball history.
Derek Fisher, known as the respected veteran champion in the locker room. One of the most underrated players in the league. To be 34 last year, and producing numbers like he was 24 is a great thing. Derek is a real champion, a strong clutch performer. He has made many clutch shots in the NBA, including the famous 0.4 Shot in the Playoffs, the clutch 3 pointer in Game 4 of the NBA 2009 Finals against the Orlando Magics. Fisher will forever be known as the "Fish That Saved Los Angeles".
Wilt cannot be in this list period. One of the most dominating basketball monsters in the history of the NBA, the Original Superman is mostly known for his 100 point game. Highest score in a game in history. He averaged 20.5 PPG in his 1st season as a 34 year old Laker. At physical peak, he averaged a career high 50 PPG. Pretty impressive.
When you're drafter 1st Pick in the 1st Round by The Lakers, you know your something special. James worthy, averaging 13 PPG as a rookie, was selected to 1st Team All-Rookie. Worthy was a big factor in the "Showtime Lakers" with his dynamic athleticism and blinding speed. He was remembered for the tragic mistake that cost Los Angeles the NBA Championship against Boston, but redeemed himself with big clutch performances in the finals next year. In Game 7, he achieved a triple double of 36 points, 16 rebounds, and 10 assists. He has then been referred to as "Big Game James".
Elgin Baylor, the 6'5 Small forward, known for his amazing hangtime in his jumpshots, and precise passing amazed fans all across the world. Its hard to not put Elgin Baylor in the top 5, but number 5 deserves it. Not to mention he scored 61 in the NBA Finals, a record yet to be topped, and averaging 19.8 rebounds a game, as a 6'5 man. Baylor will always be one of the best forwards in history.
Shaq, the superman of his era, is the most dominant basketball player we have ever witnessed, since Wilt. His numbers looked like it came from the higher scoring days when Wilt and Russle competed, but he entered the league scoring well above 20 ppg as a rookie. Not to mention leading the Orlando Magics to the Finals in his third season, defeating the likes of Michael Jordan's Chicago Bulls and Reggie Miller's Indiana Pacers in the playoffs, but enough of pre-Lakers years. Shaq lead the Lakers to the three-peat. Enough said. Shaq couldn't have done it with 24, and Kobe couldn't do it without Shaq. Shaq's inside game complimented Kobe's outside game. Not to mention the monster numbers in the regular season AND the playoffs.
Jerry West, also known as "Mr. Clutch" and "The Logo". Jerry West, was a 6'2 Wilt Chamberlain. He holds the record for highest PPG in the playoffs, averaging 46.3. Not to mention the only Finals MVP despite losing. He was also the Lakers all time scoring leader, a record Kobe Bryant recently broke. This should cement how great Jerry West is, and why he is the Logo.
Notorious for his unblockable "Skyhook" shot, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar etched his name in history by scoring 38,387 points, being the All-Time scoring leader in the NBA. He earned Rookie of The Year, 2 Finals MVP, 6 League MVPs, and 6 NBA Championships during his time as a Buck and Laker. This dominant 7'2 Laker was also listed as the greatest Center in history, by ESPN.
Modern day "Mr. Clutch" himself takes number 2. Kobe Bryant, I believe will go down as the greatest Laker of all time, and possibly second to Michael Jordan. The Black Mamba holds the record for 2nd highest points scored in a single game, by dropping 81 points against Toronto. Kobe has won three championships with Shaq, and another without him. Kobe has achieved scoring champion twice, MVP, Finals MVP, a 12 time All-Star, Slam Dunk Champion, and All-Star MVP three times. Kobe Bryant is no doubt the greatest player of this era and one of the top 5 players of all time.
Earvin "Magic" Johnson Jr. is still The greatest Laker of all time. Magic was one of the most entertaining players of all time, helping the Lakers win 5 Championships. Kareem looked at Magic as the missing piece for the Lakers, who have failed to win a championship. Magic gave birth for the exciting Showtime Lakers, where Magic performed ridiculous no-look passes and far distance alley oops. Magic is also considered to be one of the only players to be the same level of greatness as Michael Jordan. Thank You Magic for revolutionizing basketball.