L.A. Times: For their nine seasons together, Kobe Bryant has been joined to Phil Jackson’s ailing hip.

As the NBA playoff marathon begins Sunday for the Lakers, the big question is if they can satisfy the lofty expectations of their fans and win another title.

For the Lakers superstar Bryant, it’s a chance to prove he can win an NBA championship without Shaquille O’Neal. And for Lakers Coach Jackson, 63, it’s another opportunity to surpass the late Boston legend Red Auerbach for most championships won by an NBA coach (nine).

The Lakers have turned to face the next two months, and the reality that anything less than a championship is a failure.

“With our standards, it is,” Jackson said. “For the Lakers, having won a number of times, and probably the Celtics, success is measured in championships.”

Continue reading ‘Lakers begin another title quest with no excuses’