Los Angeles Lakers: 2013 Will Be Most Memorable Year for the Team in a Decade

Flashback 10 years to the summer of 2002—champagne, smiles, sunshine and one shiny trophy.

Shaquille O’Neal, Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers ended a magnificent year in memorable fashion—they were NBA champions once again.

The 10 years that followed the Lakers’ 2002 Finals win over the New Jersey Nets were tumultuous, to say the least.  

The Kobe-Shaq feud reached its boiling point; O’Neal was traded to Miami. The Lakers missed the playoffs. Bryant asked for a trade. The Lakers acquired Pau Gasol. Two more NBA championships were won. The Lakers were swept by the Dallas Mavericks and underwent widespread criticism regarding the team’s old age and lack of motivation.

Although the past 10 years have each been memorable in their own right, this season could be the most memorable of them all with the acquisition of Steve Nash.

On their quest to win a championship, Nash, Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum have the opportunity to fill the voids in their résumés and cement themselves as the best.

As a Phoenix Sun, Nash became a perennial All-Star and two-time league MVP.

Although Nash is regarded as the best point guard the league has had in the past decade, there is still a big hole in his impressive résumé: he hasn’t won a title.

Nash is still capable of playing at a high level and a championship will eradicate a significant burden and will shoot him up the list of greatest point guards of all time. 

Although Pau Gasol has helped the Lakers win two NBA titles, his dismal performance in the playoffs the past two seasons have almost eclipsed what he has accomplished.

He has been constantly criticized for being soft, for shrinking in big moments.

This disparagement can lessen if Gasol continues to play at a high level, averaging close to a doubl...

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