Can the LA Lakers Win a Title With Their Top Six Players?

The Los Angeles Lakers' reserves were outscored 20-4 in their latest loss to the San Antonio Spurs, and the poor performance continued a season-long trend for the horribly inconsistent bench players.

It's no secret that the Lakers depend less on their reserves than any other NBA title contender in the league, because their top six players may be the most talented to roam the hardwood.

In Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol, Los Angeles has arguably the best two players in the NBA at their respective positions, and in Lamar Odom they may have the league's most versatile talent.

Andrew Bynum, although inconsistent, is still one of the better young centers in the league when he is healthy, and Ron Artest has begun to display the defensive promise that was envisioned when he signed.

Derek Fisher may be the weakest link of the Lakers' top six players, and although he brings veteran toughness and clutch ability, his physical skills have eroded to the point of no return.

Fisher's poor defense from the point guard position has been a major concern for most of the season, but the players behind him have left little to be optimistic about.

Shannon Brown and Jordan Farmar are usually the first two players off the Lakers' bench in Bynum's absence, but they have yet to live up to the potential as Los Angeles' most important reserves.

In fact, it seems Farmar has regressed and his failure to grasp the most basic principles in the Lakers' scheme has been disappointing and revealing.

The past two games Farmar has been abused offensively by the likes of Deron Williams and George Hill, but more troubling is his tendency to get lost in the flow of the game.

Some of that has to do with lack of focus, but at this point in his career, the ability to stay centered should not be a problem, and it is likely Farmar will play in a different zip code next season.

Brown has the athletic...

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