Looking Back At The 2010 Lakers Championship Roster

(Image/Bleacher Report)

As we round out the decade, here at Lakers Fanclub UK we are looking back over the past 10 years and the events that took place.

We started by listing the players that the Los Angeles Lakers drafted during the tanking years (2013-2017), and where they are now. You can find that article here.

Now, we dive into the 2010 Championship winning roster in similar fashion. Who they were, what they have done since, and where they are now.

(Image/Getty Images)

Kobe Bryant

Even after his historic 2010 championship run, Kobe Bryant didn’t slow down. The Black Mamba continued to play at a level of excellence in search of a 6th championship, however injuries to both himself and his teammates deterred Bryant of acquiring another championship.

Bryant suffered a tragic injury in 2014, tearing his Achilles. Thus, making him a shell of his former self. Following this he eventually retired in the 2016 season, with that memorable 60 point performance that also featured a game winner, in his final outing.

Despite constant requests from his fans, Bryant hasn’t made any indication of returning to basketball. Instead, he has started ventures in numerous new fields; from storytelling, to film-making, and athlete preparation. He produced the short film Dear Basketball, which went onto win an Oscar, as well as an Emmy Award.

Kobe Bryant also started the ESPN show, Detail, where he goes through film of athletes to highlight their skill-set and reveal some of their weaknesses. In addition to this, he opened the Mamba Sports Academy, a training center that assists athletes of all levels in reaching their highest potential.

He has even dipped his toe into storytelling, by releasing several books. His first notable release was Kobe Bryant: The Mamba Mentality, where he described his many years in the league. His latest project is the Wizenard series, a collection of stories aimed at teaching the youth life lessons through the metaphor of sports.

It should come to no surprise that Kobe Bryant is still doing so much and achieving success in the process. Bryant has brought the fervor and perseverance for perfection from the basketball court to his daily life.

He may not be returning to the basketball court directly, but Kobe Bryant is continuing to leave his mark on the game that made him.

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(Image/Derick E. Hingle/USA Today Sport)

Pau Gasol

Pau Gasol remained as one of the NBA’s top big men following the 2010 championship. He left the Lakers for the Chicago Bulls in the 2014 free agency period, and earned All-Star recognition whilst in in Chicago.

Gasol has since continued to play in the NBA but has been slowly regressing. Mainly being a spark off the bench and a veteran leader. Currently, he is rehabbing a foot injury that resulted in him being waived by his most recent team, the Portland Trail-Blazers.

Now 39-years-old, Pau Gasol has not mentioned any sign of retirement and it seems that he is still interested in making an NBA return. We may see him on the court again very soon, once healthy.

(Image/Getty Images)

Derek Fisher

Derek Fisher has been a player that has never really left the sport of basketball after winning the 2010 championship.

In terms of his playing career, Fisher bounced around from team-to-team (Golden State Warriors, Utah Jazz, Oklahoma City Thunder, Dallas Mavericks), before eventually retiring in the 2013-14 season. Obviously, there was that 1st spell with the Lakers too, that resulted in 3 NBA Championships (2000-02). Bumping his ring total up to 5, alongside the 2009 and 2010 triumphs.

Fisher immediately signed for a coaching role with the New York Knicks, following his playing career, which lasted for less than 2 seasons. He was fired midway through the 2015-16 season. Afterwards, he tapped his toes into the broadcasting world, appearing as a guest speaker and analyst for many shows. This lead to Fisher joining Spectrum SportsNet to be an in-studio analyst for the Lakers.

Now, Derek Fisher is working as the Head Coach for the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks.

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(Image/Kyle Terada/USA Today Sports)

Andrew Bynum

Andrew Bynum has one of the more sad post-championship stories of the roster. He did set record numbers following the championship win, even being chosen as an All-Star in 2012. However, clashes with Kobe Bryant resulted in Bynum being traded away to the Philadelphia 76ers.

In Philadelphia he faced a career changing injury that forced him sit out the entire 2012-13 season. Bynum never returned to being the All-Star he once was and only played 26 NBA games following his Lakers tenure.

It was reported in 2018 that Bynum was looking to make an NBA comeback after fully rehabbing his injured knee. The intent is certainly there for the now 32-year-old to return.

Andrew Bynum’s style of play would not necessarily fit into the modern NBA. He is unlikely to get a spot on an NBA team, but there is a chance that he could opt to play in Ice Cube‘s Big 3 league, or even overseas. Either way, it will be nice to see the once star player back on the court.

(Image/AP Photo/Darren Abate)

Ron Artest/Metta World Peace

Ron Artest, now known as Metta World Peace, has had an illustrative career to say the least, and this trend continued after his championship run with the Lakers.

Following the championship, World Peace continued to play in the NBA for 6 years, with brief spells in China and Italy sandwiched in-between. However injuries and age caught up with him and his playing career came to an end. Whilst with the Lakers in-fact, in 2017.

Since retiring, World Peace took on the job of being a Player Development Coach for the Lakers’ G-League affiliate, the South Bay Lakers, where he currently still is. He also played in Ice Cube’s Big 3 league in the 2018 off-season, and has appeared in the media on numerous occasions as a guest speaker and analyst.

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(Image/Harry How/Getty Images)

Lamar Odom

Lamar Odom is a player loved by fans of the purple and gold. Mainly for being one of the best sixth men in franchise history.

Although, Odom’s career has taken a downward spiral since then. He played 3 more seasons in the NBA, beyond the 2010 championship season, but was then forced to leave after he could not obtain a roster spot in the 2014 free agency period.

Odom went onto play overseas in the Euro-League, but was only to play 2 games after suffering a back injury. As recently as 2018, he planned on playing for the Chinese Basketball Association, but ended up backing out because he did not see himself as fit enough. Odom was also deactivated by the Big 3 league in 2019, after just 1 game.

Overall, Lamar Odom has encountered much bad luck in his later basketball career. But given his personal problems, it’s great to see him fit and healthy off the court.

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(Image/The Bird Writes)

Shannon Brown

Shannon Brown hasn’t had the most exciting career of any NBA player, but he was a contributing factor to the Lakers 2010 championship nonetheless.

Since then, Brown played 5 more seasons in the NBA, with the Phoenix Suns, San Antonio Spurs, and New York Knicks, until he was finally waived by the Miami Heat in 2014.

Brown then went on to play in the G-League between 2016 and 2018. He then eventually landed in the Big 3 league, getting drafted by the Aliens in 2019.

Excluding basketball, Shannon Brown has appeared in some films including Think Like a Man and Trainwreck.

(Image/Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)

Jordan Farmar

Jordan Farmar had a decent NBA career, mainly being a role player and a solid 3-point shooter during his prime years. However, he suffered some injuries and his game started to falter at a rapid rate.

After the 2010 championship, Farmar bounced around the NBA with the New Jersey Nets, Los Angeles Clippers, Memphis Grizzlies, and even with a second spell with the Lakers. His final team was the Sacramento Kings, where he was waived in 2016.

Currently, Jordan Farmar is involved with philanthropic work as he attempts to bring basketball beyond the United States and use it as a way to unite Palestinian and Israel youth.

Harry How/Getty Images

Luke Walton

Luke Walton retired shortly after the Lakers championship run of 2010, following a spell with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2013.

Walton turned to coaching, joining the Golden State Warriors as an Assistant Coach in 2014 where was a large part of their dominance over the 2014-18 period. He took over as Head Coach of the Warriors during the 2015-16 season when Steve Kerr dealt with an illness. His performances, and winning record of 39-4, gained him the attention of the Lakers who hired him to be their new Head Coach.

Walton’s coaching tenure with the Lakers was lackluster to say the least. Both parties parted ways in 2019 and Walton can now be found on the sidelines for the Sacramento Kings.

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Sasha Vujacic

Sasha Vujacic was a developing player while he was on the Lakers’ championship roster. One that never really was given the best of opportunities to develop.

Vujacic did hit 2 clutch free throws during game 7 of the 2010 NBA Finals, and was loved by Lakers fans for it. However, his career did not go much further. He last played for the New York Knicks in 2017, and has not been in the league since.

Now he can be found playing his trade in Italy, and focusing on helping his family’s wine business in his spare time. Recently however, Vujacic has shown interest in returning to the NBA, and has worked out with a few teams.

(Image/Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Josh Powell

Josh Powell‘s NBA career never really took shape the way we might have hoped, but he has not quit on basketball.

Following the 2010 season, Powell left the Lakers for the Atlanta Hawks, After that, he bounced around many overseas teams, 12 in-fact, all on short term deals.

Josh Powell did have a brief spell with the Houston Rockets in 2014, where he also served as an Assistant Coach, but that was short lived. He is now playing in the Big 3 league, as he hopes to continue playing basketball professionally.

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(Image/Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Adam Morrison

Following the 2010 season, Adam Morrison never found his place back onto an NBA roster.

He did try however, spending a further 2 seasons overseas with Red Star Belgrade and Besiktas. This earned him a spot on the Brooklyn Net’s 2012 Summer League roster, which lead to a contract with the Portland Trail Blazers. But he was waived a short time later, and that was the last we saw of him on a basketball court.

In 2013, he returned to his alma mater Gonzaga University to take classes. He did become an Assistant Video Coordinator for the Bulldogs for the 2014-15 season.

Nowadays, you can find Adam Morrison on the sidelines for Mead High School, his alma mater, where he is an Assistant Coach.

(Image/Andrew D. Bernstein/Getty Images)

D.J. Mbenga

D.J. Mbenga left the Lakers after winning the 2010 championship, and joined the New Orleans Hornets, for what was his final season in the NBA.

He then took his trade to China and the Philippines, before catching the attention of the New York Knicks in 2014. However, he was waived within 16 days, which lead to his retirement.

D.J. Mbenga is now working with his foundation, the Mbenga Foundation to help children in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and refugees in Belgium.

3 Ways in Which Kyle Kuzma Can Improve Going into 2020

Oklahoma City Thunder v Los Angeles Lakers
(Image/Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

The Los Angeles Lakers have started the season on fire and have maintaining the best record in the NBA, one of their key pieces has yet to fully ignite as of yet. With so much at stake going forward, how can Kyle Kuzma step it up going into 2020?

The Los Angeles Lakers have been a juggernaut to start the season, with a league’s best record and team chemistry at an all-time high, things are really looking up for the purple and gold. For fans of the Lakers, this moment in time feels so sweet.

With the memory of Kobe Bryant‘s torn Achilles still etched into the memory of Lakers fans, The Chris Paul trade being vetoed, Dwight Howard leaving for Houston, numerous lottery picks and missing the playoffs year after year. Finally, Lakersnation has a team that makes all of the heartaches of the past feel like a distant memory.

When talking about this team, much of the plaudits must be given to the likes of General Manager Rob Pelinka for assembling the team, Coach Frank Vogel for executing the gameplan on a nightly basis and keeping the team in the top 10 on both ends of the floor and to LeBron James and Anthony Davis who have been incredible so far this season.

With Davis and LeBron both considered MVP candidates, it is easy to see how the Lakers are off to such a fast start.

While the likes of AD and LeBron are playing incredible, one player that huge things were expected of is Kyle Kuzma.

While being the last remaining member of the Laker’s beloved young core, Kuzma was kept in hope that he would reach the next level of his development and become the 3rd defacto star for the purple and gold. As of right now, Kuzma has fallen far short of expectation.

A lot of the blame can be put on the ankle injury which he received whilst playing for Team USA, which in turn forced Kuz to miss training camp and pre-season. In essence, Kuzma has been playing catch up all season.

With the season far from over, there is still plenty of time for Kuzma to find a rich vein of form, if this happens, the Lakers could be an even scarier team then they have shown.

Here are 3 ways in which Kyle Kuzma can improve going forward this season:

Los Angeles Lakers
(Image/Logan Riely/NBAE)

Buy into the Kevin Love role

There is nobility in being the 3rd star on a championship-contending team. For every LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, you have a Chris Bosh, for every Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol, you have Lamar Odom and for every LeBron James and Kyrie Irving, you have Kevin Love.

The role of the 3rd star is to sacrifice individually in order for the team to succeed as a unit.

Kevin Love was an absolute monster for the Minnesota Timberwolves. His ability to rebound, shoot from anywhere and be the number one option on the Timberwolves team made him a multiple time all-star and widely considered one of the best power forwards in the NBA.

However, upon Love’s arrival in Cleveland, he realized that his role was going to drastically change.

When you have transcendent talents such as LeBron James and Kyrie Irving on your roster, you do everything in order to put them in the best position to win. Which meant forcing Love into a role he has never done throughout his basketball career. 

The Cavaliers asked Love to grab rebounds and spot up from the 3-point line. For a superstar, swallowing your pride and doing what is best for the team is a humbling experience.

Love did this for the Cavaliers and in return he won a ring.

While Kyle Kuzma isn’t the same caliber of star Kevin Love is, the message remains the same, grab rebounds, outlet the ball to LeBron or AD and wait on the wings for a spot-up 3-point shot.

If Kuzma can hit the 3-point shot at an above-average rate, he has the potential to be a 20ppg scorer. He has the confidence in his shot, he has the ability and if he buys into his role fully, he will be the 3rd star the Los Angeles Lakers need.

Los Angeles Lakers
(Image/Joe Murphy/NBAE)

Continue to work hard on defense

Needless to say, so far in Kyle Kuzma’s career, we can safely say that being an elite defender has not been one of his calling cards.

Kuzma since being drafted has been guilty of getting beat by his opposing player for an easy basket or a pull-up jumper right in his face. This has caused a lot of frustration not just for his coaches and fellow teammates but also for fans of the purple and gold.

The most frustrating aspect for all involved is knowing that Kuzma is a willing defender, who is willing to work hard but his technique on the defensive end left a lot to be desired.

Kuzma’s main problem on defense is his footwork. While some of the best defenders in the NBA slide their feet in order to stay in front of their man, Kuzma would bounce on the soles of his feet, this led to players easily reading Kuzma’s footwork and throwing in hesitations and head fakes in order to get Kuzma off balance allowing the opposing player to get easy buckets.

With the likes of Frank Vogel, Jason Kidd, Lionel Hollins, and Phil Handy on staff, Kuzma has a wealth of knowledge in order to improve as a defender.

The effects of their tutelage have already been seen in Kuzma’s game. While he is still prone occasionally to bounce on the soles of his feet, he has also slowly but surely worked that out of his game and adopted the more conventional slide technique which will allow him to stay in front of his man.

Kuzma has the quickness to stay in front of his man, he has the hard-working mentality to want to get better and he is willing to put the effort in to be the best player he can be on both sides of the ball.

Continued development with the coaching staff could have Kuzma being a defensive stopper of sorts, rather than being a turnstile.

Los Angeles Lakers
(Image/Logan Riely/NBAE)

Become the 2nd Unit leader

Having been a mainstay in the Lakers starting line-up for much of his Laker’s career, it must have come as a surprise to Kyle Kuzma this off-season that he was being asked to come off the bench after being successful in the starting line-up alongside LeBron.

Adding an otherworldly talent in Anthony Davis will force you to make changes.

The Lakers so far have been spot on in moving Kuzma to the bench. With AD and LeBron playing incredibly together, it makes no sense to stick Kuzma into the starting line-up. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

While Kuzma hasn’t exactly been great in the 2nd unit as of yet as he has been working his way back to fitness, the Lakers should be encouraging Kuz to take a larger role in the team and lead the 2nd unit.

Kuzma, while young has the perfect attributes to be a leader of men. In Kyle Kuzma, you have a young man who has grown up in Flint, Michigan, who did not get many Division I offers to play college ball, who was overlooked the majority of his college career. He used people overlooking his talent and skill and turned that into fuel for the fire.

Kuzma is a hard worker who wants to get better at his craft and learn every day, willing to reach out to the titans of the game such as Kobe Bryant in order to learn everything he can in order to be the most well-rounded player he can be. His hard-working demeanor has garnered him respect from teammates significantly older than him. Kuzma has earned his place every step of the way and knows that if he doesn’t work hard it could all disappear.

With a player of his mentality, you need to challenge him to do more. While LeBron James and Anthony Davis are the Superstars, Kuzma can play the role of the leader of the 2nd unit.

This would allow for Kuz to dominate in the second unit and put the pressure on the other teams 2nd unit. This can elongate the Laker’s lead making it much easier to put teams away early on.

Kyle Kuzma’s talent is undeniable, he has the God-given ability to be a superstar. If he can realize this potential, then the purple and gold have another star on their hands.

Here is hoping everything clicks together on time in order for the Lakers to make a deep playoff run.

Lakers Fanclub UK are proud affiliate partners of Fanatics UK and the NBA Store Europe. We do possess unique promotional codes for both websites that can offer our readers and followers 10% off site-wide through the following weblinks.

Fanatics UK: http://tinyurl.com/y4vjv32b and enter the promotional code LAKERSUK10 at checkout to receive 10% off. This is not limited to just NBA apparel, but the discount can be used on MLB, NFL, NHL, Football/Soccer gear also!

NBA Store Europe: http://tinyurl.com/y585vud9 and enter the promotional code LAKERSUK10 at checkout. This is not limited to Lakers gear, the discount is available site-wide on any product you wish to purchase!

Dwight Howard Clears Waivers, Signs with the Lakers


On August 23, after a week or so of speculation, Shams Charania of The Athletic reported that Dwight Howard and the Memphis Grizzlies were finalising a buyout, with Howard planning a return to the Los Angeles Lakers.

On August 26, it was suggested that the 33-year-old center, who stands at 6-foot-11, had cleared waivers and would begin his second tenure with the purple and gold.

The first tenure being in the infamous 2012-13 campaign. Long story short, the Lakers traded for Howard, who was an All-Star at the time, the season went terribly, Steve Nash and Kobe Bryant suffered serious injuries, and a first round blowout occurred in the playoffs at the hands of the San Antonio Spurs.

Injuries weren’t all to blame during Dwight Howard’s unsuccessful first spell however, which is often referred to as the “Dwightmare” season. The team didn’t appear to mesh and Howard’s attitude lacked, severely. It was clear that he wanted to take lead of the team that was in Bryant’s hands at the time.

After getting ejecting in his final game, Howard snubbed the Lakers’ maximum contract offer and joined the Houston Rockets. This left a sour taste in the mouths of fans of the purple and gold, and rightly so.

Well, against the odds, the man once nicknamed “Superman” has returned to Los Angeles. In addition, it appears that Rob Pelinka and Co. have protected themselves in case this all goes south.

Howard’s contract will be a non-guaranteed deal. ESPN’s front office insider, Bobby Marks, has stated that the contract is often termed a “summer contract” due to its $0 salary protection. Marks goes onto reveal that Howard will earn $14,490 for every day that he is on the roster, starting from October 21.


If Howard’s attitude isn’t up to expectation, or if he suffers an injury, he will get cut from the roster, it’s as simple as that. This is a solid move by the Lakers’ front office, who are due some credit to the way they’ve conducted their off-season business so far.

On the attitude front, Howard has reportedly impressed the Lakers’ hierarchy and star players, LeBron James and Anthony Davis. By the sounds of it, he may have turned over a new leaf and will accept a lesser role to be part of a team that is expected to push for championship honours.

He wanted redemption in L.A., too, after how his lone season alongside Kobe Bryant went. He wanted to be part of a championship team, and he was willing to do whatever was asked of him, no matter the role, and be held accountable at all times, Howard told them.

The Lakers had gathered momentum in their own research into Howard over the past week, but needed the roster to be fully on board. Howard won over the players in the locker room, including James and Davis, for his approach and mindset in the visit, sources said.

Shams Charania, 23/08/19

Howard’s career at this point can go in one direction or another. He can redeem himself in Los Angeles and be part of a successful team, or his career could rapidly deteriorate where he would surely have to consider retirement.

Luckily for the Lakers, they have done their due diligence and signed him to a deal that protects the franchise for the upcoming campaign, if things go pear shaped.

But there is no doubt that Laker fans want this to work, the past is all water under the bridge, especially if a championship is at stake. Howard has reportedly lost 25 pounds and is ready to maintain his health to buy into what the Lakers are building.

Fingers crossed that all works out and Dwight Howard can be a success in his second tenure with the purple and gold. If so, it would make a brilliant documentary one day!

By Matt Evans (@mattyyyevans)

Kobe Bryant, the Playoff Duels That Never Happened


Kobe Bryant is a name synonymous with the Los Angeles Lakers, and professional basketball as a whole. Throughout his 20 year career Bryant had various accolades, numerous rivalries, and many historic performances. From the Championship 3-peat between 2000-2002, the 9 straight games of 40+ points in 2004, the 81-points against the Raptors in 2006, the back-to-back titles of 2009 and 2010, the 60-point performance in his final game, the list goes on and on.

Throughout his career there were many fantastic duels between Bryant and his NBA counterparts in the regular season, however there were some playoff match-ups that unfortunately never happened. To this day, many dispute what would have occurred if Bryant faced off against certain NBA legends in meaningful playoff scenarios.

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Michael Jordan

Throughout his career, Kobe Bryant was constantly compared to Michael Jordan, and for good reason. Bryant had modelled his game around Jordan, with like-for-like moves, at times looking like a mirror image of MJ.

Jordan and Bryant are widely regarded as the top-2 shooting guards in NBA history. Jordan acquired 6 NBA Championships, with 6 finals MVP awards, and 5 league MVPs, through his stellar career. As for Bryant, he also had a prolific career, garnering 5 NBA Championships, 2 Finals MVPs, and a single league MVP trophy.

Although Bryant and Jordan had a few duels, neither player was in their prime, as Kobe was on the younger end of the spectrum and Jordan on the older side. Both players had great respect for one another, with Bryant quoted saying “he was extremely open to having a mentor relationship and giving me a great amount of advice and an amazing amount of detail, strategies, workout regimen and things like that”.

An NBA Finals match-up between the two in their prime would have been one of the most interesting dynamics to ever take part in sports, full stop. A student overcoming his master story would have set the stage for an incredible duel of basketball prowess.

LOS ANGELES, CA - DECEMBER 04:  Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers and Dwayne Wade #3 of the Miami Heat share a laugh in the fourth quarter at Staples Center on December 4, 2009 in Los Angeles, California. The Lakers defeated the Heat 108-107. NOTE
(Image/Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

Dwyane Wade

Similar to how Bryant and Jordan had a “student idolising his teacher” relationship, Dwyane Wade also had a similar connection with The Black Mamba. Wade envied Bryant, and constantly tried to out-duel him on a nightly basis. However, unlike Michael Jordan, a playoff match-up between Bryant and Wade was one that was very possible.

Both players were playing in their primes at similar times, with each being regarded as top-10 players in the NBA. The 2010-11 season looked to possess the ideal framework for a match-up, but it was not meant to be. The Lakers were looking to 3-peat for the second time in a decade, and the Miami Heat had just acquired LeBron James and Chris Bosh, to form a big 3.

Bryant and the Lakers were swept in the Western Conference Semi-Finals by the Dallas Mavericks, who beat Wade, James, Bosh, and the Heat in the NBA Finals, to claim their first ever title.

Dwyane Wade and Kobe Bryant were both undisputed stars, and a duel between the two, mixed with the rivalry that had been developed throughout the 2000s could have come to a settlement.

Luckily we experienced many regular season battles between the two legends, but an NBA Finals series would have been a treat.

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(Image/Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Shaquille O’Neal

The feud between Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal is one of the most proclaimed rivalries the NBA has ever seen. From being the core pieces of one of the most unstoppable dynasties ever (Lakers, 2000-02), to becoming drama infested rivals who forced a separation. Bryant and O’Neal’s relationship was as confusing as they got.

The beef between the former teammates had quelled to a point where Bryant was attempting to solidify himself as an individual star who could compete without O’Neal. While O’Neal was trying to prove to the world that he was still a fierce competitor that could dominate and bulldoze anyone that stood in his way.

The 2004-2005 season was the first time that both had been on different teams since 1996. During the season, Bryant averaged 25 points, 6 rebounds, and 6 assists, compared to O’Neal who put up 22 points, 10 rebounds, and 2.3 blocks. A small glimpse of the potential finals match-up came on Christmas Day 2004, where the Lakers and Heat faced off. Bryant (42 points) missed an overtime buzzer-beater and O’Neal (24 points) and the Heat walked away with the win.

The game was competitive and a joy to watch, but in regards to a finals match-up, that never occurred. O’Neal had made it to the Eastern Conference Finals, and Bryant failed to lead his team to the playoffs accumulating a record of 34-48. The following year, O’Neal got his ring without Bryant, but the Lakers were knocked out in the 1st round to the Phoenix Suns, another potential finals match-up passed by.

In O’Neal’s later years, he faced injury problems, and Bryant went on to claim 2 titles without his presence. A finals match up between these former teammates would have possessed an incredible amount of passion and intensity that would have gone down as one of the best finals series in history, no doubt.

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Tracy McGrady

Kobe Bryant stated that Tracy McGrady was the toughest opponent he had ever faced. Both McGrady and Bryant had come out of high school a year apart and were looked at as two of the most dangerous offensive weapons in the NBA at the time.

Both were similar in playing style, they were athletic, and possessed the ability to score from pretty much anywhere on the court. Both held their own in defense also. In their 21 regular season match-ups, they put up electrifying offensive games, that really were a joy to watch. Over the course of his career Bryant did get the upper hand averaging 25 points, to McGrady’s 19.6.

Looking back, a perfect playoff match-up would have been in the 2002-03 season. McGrady averaged a league-high 32.1 points, adding 6.5 rebounds, and 5.5 assists. Bryant also had an impressive season averaging 30 points, 6 assists, and 7 rebounds. However, neither player was able to make it to the NBA Finals, losing in the 2nd and 1st rounds, respectively. A 7 game playoff series between these two in their prime would have been a delight.

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(Image/Harry How/Getty Images)

LeBron James

There is no doubt that Kobe Bryant and LeBron James were two of the greatest players to play during the 2000-2010 era. Constant debates ensued regarding who was the better player. Playing in opposite conferences, a finals meeting between the two appeared very likely. Unfortunately, the stars never quite aligned for it to happen.

Seeing a young LeBron filled with athleticism and explosiveness, against a smarter, more tactical Bryant would have been delightful on the eye. The 2008-09 season had the perfect template set in place as well. Bryant averaged 27 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists over the course of the season, leading the Lakers to a 65-17 record. LeBron also had a stellar season, averaging 28 points, 7 rebounds, and 7 assists, leading the Cleveland Cavaliers to 66-16 record, whilst winning his first regular season MVP award.

The stage was set for an epic finals match-up, with both teams reaching the Conference Finals. Although Kobe Bryant took his team to the finals, eventually winning the title, LeBron James and the Cavaliers were eliminated by the Orlando Magic.

Had LeBron been able to overcome the Magic, the NBA could have witnessed one of the most exciting finals series of all time.

By Srikar Devireddy (@srikardr999)

Giveaway: Win a Lakers Fanclub UK Bundle

We have a couple of items that we have put together to form a competition giveaway bundle.

These are a white Lakers Fanclub UK logo t-shirt and a pair of Kobe Bryant socks. There will be one winner who can select t-shirt sizes between men’s M-XXL. With the socks, one size fits all.

The t-shirt is courtesy of UK Los Angeles Clippers fan, Dan Coupe, who wanted to support the fan-club by purchasing from our store for it to be used in a giveaway. A huge thank you goes to Dan for this act of kindness.

The competition is available worldwide and will end at 1pm (UK Time) on Wednesday August 28. To enter, retweet and like the below tweet, and follow @lakersfanclubuk on Twitter. Please ensure that you do all of the above otherwise your entry will not be counted. The winner will be drawn at random.

Good luck!

Win a Pair of Kobe Bryant Socks with Feeling Soxy

Lakers Fanclub UK have teamed up with ‘Feeling Soxy’ for a giveaway. You can win a pair of Kobe Bryant socks by retweeting the below tweet and following Lakers Fanclub UK on Twitter. We are giving away two pairs, so get entering if you want to be in the draw to win!

Entrants must be located in the United Kingdom to enter this competition. The competition closes at 8pm (UK time) on Monday 25th March 2019. The winners will be selected shortly after.

Check out Feeling Soxy’s website over at https://feelingsoxy.com. The website houses a variety of socks to suit your everyday needs. Make sure to get involved with Feeling Soxy over on Facebook and Instagram, where you can catch new product releases, sale announcements and the occasional giveaway.



“Here at Feeling Soxy we believe in comfort and happiness. We hope you can find something to bring a little more joy into your everyday life. We’re a small startup in Leeds so we can hand pack every Feeling Soxy package to the highest standard you deserve.”