However, with both the Utah Jazz and the Houston Rockets playing very consistent basketball in their last 10 games as well, the Lakers' playoff chances are still looking pretty grim.
In summation, the Lakers' playoff hopes hinge on their continual surge in defensive effort and offensive efficiency as well as slippage from either the Jazz or the Rockets.
With that being said, the Lakers are only behind the Rockets by three games in the loss column.
While the Jazz have paint presence and size in the interior, the Rockets are more of a run-and-gun team that should be more susceptible to inconsistency as the season winds down.
An inside-and-out game is much more consistent than a run-and-gun game that is dependent on jumpers to fall consistently.
Thus, if the Lakers are going to overtake either of those two, it's most likely going to be the Rockets.
To keep their playoff hopes alive, the Lakers' have to finish well above .500 in March to make up some ground on the Rockets while hoping for the Rockets to falter down the stretch.
Stats are accurate as of Feb. 27, 2013
Article Source: Bleacher Report - Los Angeles Lakers