L.A. Lakers: Well, This Isn’t Exactly What They Had in Mind

How did it all go so wrong for the Los Angeles Lakers?

Back in October many had them pegged as a potential dynasty with Dwight Howard and Steve Nash on board. Now, just six months later, people are debating whether the Lakers should blow the team up or not.

Really, they never had a chance to come together and forge an identity. Howard's availability for the start of the season was in question following back surgery up until about 10 days prior to opening night. Resting Howard for the majority of training camp and preseason put the Lakers behind the eight-ball early on.

Five quarters into the season, they faced their first major injury issue, losing Nash to a seemingly innocuous leg injury that evolved from bone bruise to non-displaced fracture—which kept the starting point guard out for nearly two months. 

It wasn't just the players who were constantly getting reshuffled. Mike Brown (remember him?) and the much-ballyhooed Princeton offense lasted all of five games before getting canned, essentially canceling out all the offseason work the Lakers had put in to adapt to each other in the new scheme.

After a dramatic coaching search, in came Mike D'Antoni or as Lakers fans like to think of him—not Phil Jackson.

D'Antoni immediately drew the ire of Pau Gasol by benching him during fourth quarters and generally not putting him in a position to succeed, which was just the first step to turning the fanbase soundly against him.

You know the rest of the story. The injuries piled up, and the Lakers kept sliding in the standings before rallying over the second half of the season to make the playoffs.

Of course, it was all for naught, as the San Antonio Spurs dusted them off in four games so easily that Tony Parker had a hard time comprehending what happened.

One day after the embarrassing sweep was completed, the city of L.A. was in full-fledged panic...

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