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What's new with the Los Angeles Lakers? That's what this page is all about.

The Team Spirit FAST BREAK website begins where the Team Spirit books end.

That's because basketball never stands still … And I can never squeeze everything I want into 48 pages!

Take a look at some of the Lakers collectibles I have in my home.

Enjoy this site, check back whenever you like, and EMAIL me with any questions or comments about the Lakers.

 

updates
     
   

2013January 7, 2016: Kobe Bryant joined Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Karl Malone as the only NBA players to score 33,000 points. All three have worn Los Angeles uniforms.

Season Preview: As the Kobe Bryant era draws to a close, the Lakers find themselves short on talent at several positions. Roy Hibbert is solid at center, but the team needs its youth movement—featuring Jordan Clarkson, Julius Randle, and D’Angelo Russell—to grow up fast.

2013Recap: The Lakers spent the year rebuilding and paid the price, with a 21–61 record—the worst in team history. Kobe Bryant missed more than half the year with an injury, leaving Jeremy Lin, Carlos Boozer, and Jordan Hill to pick up the pieces.

January 14, 2015: Kobe Bryant passed Michael Jordan for third place on the NBA's all-time scoring list.

Season Preview: Injuries destroyed the Lakers in 2013–14, so this season will help the team better understand its strengths and weaknesses. Kobe Bryant will lead the team in scoring, but behind him are several question marks, including center Jordan Hill and guard Jeremy Lin. The Lakers hope first-round pick Julius Randle can become one of the best young power forwards in the NBA. He will learn the game watching Carlos Boozer, who came o L.A. after four seasons with the Bulls.

2013Recap: Age and injuries slowed the Lakers down for much of the season. Steve Nash and Kobe Bryant were unable to stay in the lineup, and their teammates could not pick up the slack. In a February game against the Timberwolves, three Lakers went down with injuries! Pau Gasol stayed healthy and led the team in scoring and rebounding.

     
updates
     
Los Angeles Lakers Team Spirit

This card of Vern Mikkelsen came with potato chips. It's really hard to find one without a grease stain or a crease. (Potato Products Corp.)

 

 

Los Angeles Lakers Team Spirit

I love this card. It looks like Goodrich is floating in outer space. Where do you suppose the ball goes after it leaves his hand? (NBA Players Association)

 

 

Vern Mikkelsen — 6' 7" Forward
Born: 10/21/1928
Died: 11/21/2013
Played for Team: 1949–50 to 1958–59
Vern Mikkelsen was the most physical forward of the 1950s. He played close to the basket and was a fierce rebounder. Mikkelsen made six All-Star teams and was inducted in to the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1995.


Rudy La Russo — 6' 7" Forward
Born: 11/11/1937
Died: 7/9/2004
Played for Team: 1959–60 to 1966–67
Rudy LaRusso played alongside Elgin Baylor on the Lakers' front line in the 1960s. He averaged a double-double three years in a row and was an All-Star twice for L.A.


Gail Goodrich — 6' 1" Guard
Born: 4/23/1943
Played for Team: 1965–66 to 1967–68 & 1970–71 to 1975–76
The Lakers lost Gail Goodrich in the 1968 NBA Expansion Draft, but traded to get him back two years later. He was an All-Star four years in a row after his return to L.A. and was the leading scorer on the 1972 championship team.


Happy Hairston  — 6' 7" Forward
Born: 5/31/1942
Died: 5/1/2001  
Played for Team: 1969–70 to 1974–75
Harold "Happy" Hairston was a rebounding machine. He once had 13 defensive rebounds in one quarter. Los Angeles fans were pleased the team traded for Happy. The Lakers went to the NBA Finals three times after he joined the team.


Jamaal Wilkes — 6' 6" Forward
Born: 5/2/1953
Played for Team: 1978–77 to 1984–85
Jamaal Wilkes was nicknamed "Silk" for his smooth game. He averaged over 17 points six years in a row for the Lakers and represented the team in two All-Star Games. Wilkes was enshrined in the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2012.


Byron Scott — 6' 3" Guard
Born: 3/28/1961
Played for Team: 1983–84 to 1992–93 & 1996–97
Byron Scott was a key part of the Lakers attack. He could start a fast break or finish one. He could also hit long 3-pointers. Scott helped L.A. win three championships.


A.C. Green — 6' 9" Forward
Born: 10/3/1963
Played for Team: 1985–86 to 1992–93 & 1999–00
A.C. Green led the Lakers in rebounding six times. His defense helped L.A.
win back-to-back championships in 1987 and 1988.

     
updates
     
Los Angeles Lakers Team Spirit

Mychal Thompson signed this photo. He actually played more seasons for the Trailblazers than the Lakers. (Author's Collection)

 

Los Angeles Lakers Team Spirit

Kurt Rambis didn't get photographed shooting too often, That's probably why he autographed this photo. (Author's Collection)

 

FIRST & FOREMOST
In 1987–88, the Lakers traded for Mychal Thompson, who had been the first pick in the NBA Draft in 1978. That gave L.A. four players who had been the #1 overall pick—Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (1969), Magic Johnson (1979), James Worthy (1982), and Thompson (1978). The Lakers defeated the Celtics that season to win the NBA title.


BEAT YOU TO IT
Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher rank among basketball's greatest backcourt duos. In 2010, Fisher played his 1,000th NBA game on February 10. One game later, Bryant played in his 1,000th game. Later that season, Bryant and Fisher won their fifth championship together.


BRIGHT AND EARLY
When Bill Sharman became the coach of the Lakers in 1971, he introduced a new routine to the NBA: the morning shoot-around. That season the team won 33 games in a  row.


SUPER, MAN
Kurt Rambis was the "Clark Kent" of the Lakers during the 1980s. He didn't look like much of a player when he took the court wearing thick glasses and a bushy moustache. But his defense and rebounding helped the team win four championships.


YER OUT!
Pro basketball was a rough sport in the 1950s. No player was rougher than Vern Mikkelsen of the Lakers. He fouled out of 127 games—about one in every five that he played. No one held it against Mikkelsen, however. He was picked for the All-Star Game six times.

     
updates
     
Los Angeles Lakers Team Spirit

This card of George Mikan was cut off the back of a Wheaties box in 1952. Wheaties has been putting athletes on their boxes for 80 years. (General Mills, Inc.)

 

 

Los Angeles Lakers Team Spirit

As tall as this card is, Kareem still had to bend over to fit inside it! (Topps, Inc.)

 

 

SCORING
1947–48 — George Mikan — 21.3*
1948–49 — George Mikan — 28.3**
1949–50 — George Mikan — 27.4
1950–51 — George Mikan — 28.4
1969–70 — Jerry West — 31.2
1999–00 — Shaquille O'Neal — 29.7
2005–06 — Kobe Bryant — 35.4
2006–07 — Kobe Bryant — 31.6


REBOUNDING
1951–52 — George Mikan — 13.5
1952–53 — George Mikan — 14.4
1968–69 — Wilt Chamberlain — 21.1
1970–71 — Wilt Chamberlain — 18.2
1971–72 — Wilt Chamberlain — 19.2
1972–73 — Wilt Chamberlain — 18.6
1975–76 — Kareem Abdul-Jabbar — 16.9
2012–13 — Dwight Howard — 12.4


ASSISTS
1971–72 — Jerry West — 9.7
1982–83 — Magic Johnson — 10.5
1983–84 — Magic Johnson — 13.1
1985–86 — Magic Johnson — 12.6
1986–87 — Magic Johnson — 12.2


STEALS
1980–81 — Magic Johnson — 3.4
1981–82 — Magic Johnson — 2.7

Steals did not become an official statistic until 1973–74.


BLOCKED SHOTS
1973–74 — Elmore Smith — 4.9
1975–76 — Kareem Abdul-Jabbar — 4.1
1978–79 — Kareem Abdul-Jabbar — 4.0
1979–80 — Kareem Abdul-Jabbar — 3.4

Blocks did not become an official statistic until 1973–74.

* National Basketball League Leader
** Basketball Association of America Leader

     
updates
Los Angeles Lakers Team Spirit

Fans bought this program at the L.A. Forum during the 1972 NBA Finals. The Knicks and Lakers played for the championship three times in four seasons. (Los Angeles Lakers)

 

 

Los Angeles Lakers Team Spirit

Rookie Magic Johnson stars on this 1980 Sporting News. He led the Lakers to the league title that season. (The Sporting News)

 

 

Los Angeles Lakers Team Spirit

This ticket is from the 1985 NBA Finals. L.A. beat the Celtics in 6 games. (Author's Collection)

 


LAKERS in the FINALS

National Basketball League

SEASON OPPONENT SCORE
1947–48 Rochester Royals Won 3–1*

 

Basketball Association of America

SEASON OPPONENT SCORE
1948–49 Washington Capitols Won 4–2*

 

National Basketball Association

SEASON OPPONENT SCORE
1949–50 Syracuse Nationals Won 4–2*
1951–52 New York Knicks Won 4–3*
1952–53 New York Knicks Won 4–1*
1953–54 Syracuse Nationals Won 4–3*
1958–59 Boston Celtics Lost 0–4*
1961–62 Boston Celtics Lost 3–4
1962–63 Boston Celtics LostL 2–4
1964–65 Boston Celtics Lost 1–4
1965–66 Boston Celtics Lost 3–4
1967–68 Boston Celtics Lost 2–4
1968–69 Boston Celtics Lost 3–4
1969–70 New York Knicks Lost 3–4
1971–72 New York Knicks Won 4–1
1972–73 New York Knicks Lost 4–1
1979–80 Philadelphia 76ers Won 4–2
1981–82 Philadelphia 76ers Won 4–2
1982–83 Philadelphia 76ers Lost 0–4
1983–84 Boston Celtics Lost 3–4
1984–85 Boston Celtics Won 4–2
1986–87 Boston Celtics Won 4–2
1987–88 Detroit Pistons Won 4–3
1988–89 Detroit Pistons Lost 0–4
1990–91 Chicago Bulls Lost 1–4
1999–2000 Indiana Pacers Won 4–2
2000–01 Philadelphia 76ers Won 4–1
2001–02 New Jersey Nets Won 4–0
2003–04 New York Nets Lost 1–4
2007–08 Boston Celtics Lost 2–4
2008–09 Orlando Magic Won 4–1
2009–10 Boston Celtics Won 4–3

 

* Played in Minneapolis

 
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