More Than Kobe: Pau Gasol, Lamar Odom Will Lead LA Lakers to 2011 Repeat

Kobe Bryant is the Robin of the L.A. Lakers—as in Robin Hood of course, and everyone knows that every Robin Hood has a company of Merry Men at his disposal.

This year, more than ever, this Robin will depend on his Merry Men to carry him to a Three-Peat.

The playoffs are fast approaching, and the Lakers are making a convincing run for the NBA’s setting sun, with only two losses in their last 19 games. 

More importantly, the Lakers have made dramatic statements by disposing of both the San Antonio Spurs and the Dallas Mavericks in a stretch of games that have them gaining tremendous ground in trying to achieve the No. 1 seed.

Tinsel Town’s third NBA championship in as many years—as well as a second three-peat—seems to be within their grasp, but if there is any truth to the expert assessments of this season, it will be more difficult to win it all this year. 

For the most part, Robin Hood and his Merry Men consist of the same blueprint of players as last year’s championship run, but there are two dramatic differences this year.  First and foremost, Bryant’s sore left knee is not going anywhere. Secondly, there are more legitimate contenders in both the east and the west then there has been in recent memory.

While in the twilight of a stellar career, success for the L.A. Lakers this season would put the perennial superstar Bryant in the same double three-peat boat as Michael Jordan, and he will undoubtedly be regarded as one of the top ten greatest players to ever play the game.

Although Bryant remains a key contributor and the number one scoring option for his team, Father Time has ensured that he is not as consistently dominant as he used to be. 

His bone-on-bone left knee is feeling the effects of playing the better part of 82 games, a grueling schedule in which Bryant has given himself little rest for a cause t...

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