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Los Angeles Lakers

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The Lakers hope to go all the way in the 2010 Playoffs.

The Lakers lost to the Celtics in the 2008 NBA Finals.

The Lakers beat the Spurs in the Conference Finals of the 2008 NBA Playoffs after beating the Jazz in the SemiFinals 4-2.

The Los Angeles Lakers are a professional basketball team based in Los Angeles, California, who play in the National Basketball Association (NBA). The Lakers are notable for having (at the end of the 2005–06 season) the most wins (2,806), the highest winning percentage (61.5%), the most finals appearances (28), and the second most championships (14) of any franchise. They also hold the record for the longest consecutive win streak (33) in U.S. professional team sports.

During the 1996-1997 offseason, the Lakers acquired Shaquille O'Neal from the Orlando Magic and newly-drafted Kobe Bryant from the Charlotte Hornets. Following the hiring of Phil Jackson as head coach in 1999, the team returned to championship form; led by O'Neal, Bryant, and a talented supporting cast, the Lakers won three consecutive NBA Finals from 2000-02.

In 2004, O'Neal was traded to the Miami Heat and Jackson temporarily retired. After the Lakers struggled in 2004-05, Jackson returned for the following season, and the Bryant-led team returned to the postseason, losing to the Phoenix Suns in the first round.

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Early Years

The Lakers started out as the National Basketball League Detroit Gems and relocated to Minneapolis in 1947. They drafted George Mikan with the 1st pick. John Kundla took over as coach and with Mikan and with some fresh faces from University of Minnesota, the Lakers won the 1947-1948 NBL Championship and moved to the Basketball Association of America and won that championship in 1948-1949. In 1949 the BAA & NBL merged into the NBA.

The Minneapolis Lakers dominated the NBA with Hall of Famers Clyde Lovellette, George Mikan, Jim Pollard, Slater Martin, and Vern Mikkelsen. Their dynasty won the championship 5 of 6 years (1949-1954).

The Lakers moved to LA in 1960 and featured Hall of Famers Elgin Baylor, Jerry West, Gail Goodrich, and Wilt Chamberlain. Unfortunately they faced the Boston Celtics in their dynasty years and lost to them 6 of 8 years. In 1972 under the coaching of Bill Sharman the Lakers won their 1st championship in Los Angeles. Even Kareem Abdul-Jabbar couldn't lead them to a championship until Magic Johnson arrived in 1979. The rookie MVP Magic started for Kareem in the 1980 championship and led the Lakers to victory over the Philadelphia 76ers. Coach Pat Riley and the Lakers dominated the 1980s. They made the finals 8 times and won all the marbles 5 times in the decade. They had consecutive championships in 1987 & 1988.

After the 1996 season the Lakers signed Shaq (Shaquille O'Neal) and acquired rookie Kobe Bryant. In 1999 Phil Jackson took over as head coach and the lakers won 3 consecutive finals in 2000-2002.

O'Neal was traded to the Miami Heat and Jackson temporarily retired as coach in 2004.

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