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Tim Duncan

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After 16 NBA Championships and 31 Western Conference Titles, the Lakers have been one of the most storied and successful franchises in NBA history. From the eras of West, Chamberlain, Kareem, Magic, and Kobe, there have been countless record-breaking performances and memorable games that have added to Lakers glory. Let’s take a look back at some notable moments for the purple and gold, from the week of March 30-April 5, over their 66-year history.

March 31, 2002

The Lakers defeated the San Antonio Spurs in a 96-95 thriller at the STAPLES Center. With the Lakers trailing by one point with 15 seconds left in regulation, Derek Fisher made two clutch free throws, after a loose ball foul, to give Los Angeles the lead for good. Shaquille O’Neal then blocked a Tim Duncan jumper at the other end of the court to end the game and seal the victory for the Lakers. Kobe Bryant led the purple and gold with 31 points and nine rebounds, while O’Neal added 24 points and nine boards.

April 4, 2003

Kobe Bryant hit a game-winning buzzer-beater over Shane Battier, as the Lakers erased a 23-point fourth-quarter deficit to defeat the Grizzlies 102-101 in Memphis. Bryant finished with 21 points, including 10 in the fourth quarter. Shaquille O’Neal led Los Angeles with 33 points and 19 rebounds, on 13 of 20 shots from the field.

Reed Saxon/AP
Reed Saxon/AP

April 5, 1984

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar became the NBA’s all-time leading scorer, as he surpassed Wilt Chamberlain’s career total of 31,419 points in a 129-115 victory over the Jazz. Abdul-Jabbar’s record-clinching shot came in the form of his trademark sky-hook. To this day, Abdul-Jabbar remains the NBA’s all-time leading scorer. He finished his illustrious career with 38,387 points.

April 5, 1998

The Lakers rallied from an 18-point third-quarter deficit to defeat the Pistons 105-103 in overtime at The Palace in Detroit. Shaquille O’Neal led the way for Los Angeles, as he scored 35 points and collected 12 rebounds, while Nick Van Exel chipped in with 19 points. This victory marked the fifth straight win for the Lakers, as they completed their first four-game Eastern Conference road sweep since the 1986-87 championship-winning season.

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Photo courtesy of Andrew D. Bernstein, Getty Images

March 19, 2014 — 7:30 PM (PST)
STAPLES Center, Los Angeles, CA
TV: ESPN / TWC SportsNet / TWC SportsNet Deportes
Radio: 710 ESPN (English) / 1330 ESPN (Spanish)

After 4 days off, the Lakers seek revenge as they play vs. San Antonio Spurs tonight for the 2nd game in a row. The Spurs easily handled the Lakers during last Friday’s matchup, defeating the Lakers 119-85 despite future Hall-of-Famers F Tim Duncan, PG Tony Parker, and SG Manu Ginibili all playing under 16 minutes.

The Lakers have a brutal schedule to conclude this season, playing 12 of their last 16 games vs. teams over .500 record. As the Lakers front office seek to determine how to move forward during this upcoming offseason, they have a few bright spot in an otherwise dismal season. One of the bright spot is SG Jodie Meeks, who has played extremely well this season replacing SG Kobe Bryant in the starting lineup. Meeks’ scoring average of 15.3 PPG while shooting at a career high pace of 45% FG and 40.2% from behind the arc. Meeks has made a case to be part of the reloading process for the Lakers offseason. If he cannot reach a deal with the Lakers, he will definitely sign a more lucaritive offer with another team.

Projected Starters

PG – Tony Parker/ Kendall Marshall [Advantage: Spurs]
SG – Danny Green / Jodie Meeks [Advantage: Spurs]
SF – Kawhi Leonard /  Wesley Johnson [Advantage: Spurs]
PF – Tim Duncan / Ryan Kelly [Advantage: Spurs]
C – Boris Diaw / Pau Gasol [Advantage: Lakers]

Notable Bench Players

Spurs: G Manu Ginobili, G Marco Bellinelli, C Tiago Splitter, PG Patrick Mills
Lakers: C Robert Sacre, G Kent Bazemore, Xavier Henry

Bench Advantage: Spurs

Injury List

Spurs: None
Lakers: Out-PG Jordan Farmar, Out-G Kobe Bryant,  Out-PG Steve Nash, Out-F Jordan Hill, Out-F Nick Young

Bottom Line

If the Lakers can find a good opportunity to defeat the Spurs in their current state, it would be tonight. The Lakers have had 4 days off, so they should have fresh legs in order to hit a lot of their 3-pt shots. Although odds are in favor that the Lakers will suffer the same fate vs. Spurs, I believe the Lakers can compete throughout this game if they can come out of the gate with a sense of urgency. I believe we can see an upset for tonight’s game that will definitely bring a positive vibe back into their locker room.

Prediction

Lakers: 103-99

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Photo by Gabriel Bouys | AFP | Getty Images

March 14, 2014 — 5:30 PM (PST)
AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX
TV: NBATV / TWC SportsNet / TWC SportsNet Deportes
Radio: 710 ESPN (English) / 1330 ESPN (Spanish)

The Lakers face off vs. 1st seed San Antonio Spurs tonight. If a term stability comes up in an NBA dictionary, the Spurs would be the definition.

Future Hall-of-Famers F Tim Duncan, PG Tony Parker, and SG Manu Ginibili, have played together since 2002-2003 season, winning 3 championships together and going for another title this season. Parker has taken the throne from Duncan and Ginobili to become the team leader, scoring 17.7 PPG while dishing out 6.2 APG.

Spurs President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach, Gregg Popovich, has done another spectacular job saving his star players until the playoffs while maintaining the best record in the NBA. Without Phil Jackson coaching anymore, Popovich is unquestionably the best head coach in the NBA. With Spurs Owner Peter Holt leaving all basketball decisions up to Popovich, Popovich has shown that a great basketball coach can be an even better asset to run the basketball-related aspects of an organization.

Projected Starters

PG – Tony Parker/ Kendall Marshall [Advantage: Spurs]
SG – Danny Green / Jodie Meeks [Advantage: Spurs]
SF – Kawhi Leonard /  Wesley Johnson [Advantage: Spurs]
PF – Tim Duncan / Ryan Kelly [Advantage: Spurs]
C – Boris Diaw / Pau Gasol [Advantage: Lakers]

Notable Bench Players

Spurs: G Manu Ginobili, G Marco Bellinelli, C Tiago Splitter, PG Patrick Mills
Lakers: PG Jordan Farmar, C Robert Sacre, G Kent Bazemore, Xavier Henry

Bench Advantage: Spurs

Injury List

Spurs: None
Lakers: Out-G Kobe Bryant,  Out-PG Steve Nash, Out-F Jordan Hill, Out-F Nick Young

Bottom Line

With all the distractions surrounding the Lakers, major difficulties exist to focus solely on tonight’s matchup. The Spurs continue to play extremely well regardless of who they put out on the floor, so this game will unfortunately look like the same outcome as last night.

Prediction

Spurs 120-106

Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE/Getty Images

After 16 NBA Championships and 31 Western Conference Titles, the Lakers have been one of the most storied and successful franchises in NBA history. From the eras of West, Chamberlain, Kareem, Magic, and Kobe, there have been countless record-breaking performances and memorable games that have added to Lakers glory. Let’s take a look back at some notable moments for the purple and gold, from the week of February 9-15, over their 66-year history.

February 9, 1992

Magic Johnson was honored for the second time in his illustrious career as the MVP of the NBA All-Star Game, as he dropped a game-high 25 points and dished out nine assists to lead the West to a 153-113 victory over the Eastern Conference squad. This game was Johnson’s first time back on the hardwood since announcing his retirement from the NBA on November 7, 1991.

February 10, 2002

Kobe Bryant was named the MVP of the 52nd NBA All-Star Game after scoring 31 points in 30 minutes of action for the Western Conference team, as they defeated the East 135-120 in Philadelphia. This game marked the first of four times that Bryant would win the All-Star Game MVP award in his career.

Andy Hayt/ NBAE/ Getty Images
Andy Hayt / NBAE / Getty Images

February 13, 2000

Shaquille O’Neal shared the All-Star Game MVP honors with Tim Duncan after scoring 22 points in 25 minutes, as the West held off the East 137-126 at The Arena in Oakland. The powerful Western Conference starting frontcourt, including O’Neal, Duncan, and Kevin Garnett, tallied 70 total points and grabbed 33 rebounds collectively.

February 13, 2001

Kobe Bryant hit a game-winning layup with 4.8 seconds left in overtime, and then hit a free throw to complete the three-point play after getting fouled on the shot, to lift the Lakers over the Nets 113-110 in New Jersey. Bryant’s game-winner overshadowed Stephon Marbury’s game-high 50 points for the Nets. Bryant finished the game with a team-high 38 points, while Shaquille O’Neal contributed 32 for the Lakers.

February 14, 1986

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar became the NBA’s all-time leader for total minutes played in a career, as he surpassed Elvin Hayes’ previous record of 50,000 minutes in a 141-117 win over Atlanta. Abdul-Jabbar finished his career with 57,446 total minutes played, which still holds as the NBA record.

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