Why the Los Angeles Lakers Are Worse This Year Than Last Year

The Los Angeles Lakers are considered underdogs to repeat as NBA Champions and the more I consider that shocking fact, the more I have come to agree with it.  The truth is the Lakers are not even as good as they were last season when they barely beat the fourth seeded Boston Celtics in the NBA Finals.  

Many people have looked at the front office's off season moves and attempted to spin them as a positive rather than a negative for L.A., but I can not longer go along with such deceptions and this article will poke holes in the Los Angeles propaganda machine.  For argument's sake I will consider their main competition, currently the Miami Heat, as a measuring stick.

Kobe Bryant has a growing list of career injuries.  The most noticeable is his knee surgery, the third major surgery in his career on the knee, which Kobe says is about "60 percent healed" at this point.  Although Kobe fans will suggest it means he had a good summer of rest and recuperation, the fact is he will begin the season with less training, strength, and preparation than he has in years.  

Offseason weight lifting and training is a serious part of Kobe's regimen and a reason for his end-of-season success.  Viewed in this light, time missed due to surgery is a negative, thus Kobe Bryant is worse off than he was a year ago, and worse off than he was in the playoffs.  

Lamar Odom spent his summer playing FIBA basketball in Turkey (where he won the gold medal) after playing 237 regular season games since the start of the 2007-2008 season, plus 60-plus playoff games. 

Every year he gets older and the risk of injury grows; he has now played in as many or more basketball games at the professional level than any other player in the world. Lamar Odom will likely miss at least ten games due to injury this year.  

Derek Fisher continues to decline each year due to aging, and Lakers fans were a...

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