Lakers Superior: Sorry, San Antonio Spurs, LA Is Still the Best in the West

It must be February, because premature talk of the Lakers demise is in full swing. 

Whether its regarding age, Kobe’s “un-clutchness” or the disappointing play of Steve Blake. 

Despite holding the second best record in the West, with what’s being said, it seems as if the only thing they’re contending for is the No. 1 draft pick.

The Lakers are still the best team in basketball, and they have been for some time.  It’s easy to get carried away by the Spurs' sexy new offense or the Thunder’s intimidating one-two punch of Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant. 

This is the same talk that surrounded them the end of last season, analysts debated for hours about whether or not the Lakers could “Turn on the Switch” come playoff time.  Well, they did.

Last post-season, the Lakers cruised through a shockingly loaded Western Conference that featured eight 50-win teams compared to only four in the East. 

The Lakers eighth-seeded opponent in Round 1, the Thunder, sported the same record as the team they faced in the Finals. 

In fact, this is the same kind of talk the Celtics were barraged with when they tripped and stumbled their way into the playoffs last season following a hot start.  The anchors on ESPN take the regular season more seriously than the actual players do.

Quite simply, in a playoff setting, no team can match up with the Lakers, particularly when the reserves are out.  Lamar Odom, Matt Barnes and Steve Blake all started on their prior teams before coming to the Lakers. 

In the postseason, the game shifts into a slower-paced, grind it out, half-court type style that the Lakers excel at.  Contrary to the Spurs, who accumulate most of their points in transition and with a faster-paced style. 

The Lakers routinely have two 7-footers running...

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