The Lakers return home to Crypto.com Arena on Friday with the chance to close out their first-round series against the Grizzlies.
After falling to Memphis in Game 5 on the road, the Lakers have the opportunity to do something the franchise hasn’t done in over a decade — win a playoff series in Los Angeles.
This is not to dismiss the Lakers’ 2020 NBA championship, which was won in the Disney Bubble in Orlando once the season resumed from the COVID-19 hiatus.
It is simply to point out just how long it has been since the fanbase was able to celebrate a series victory in the same arena as the team.
Whether or not LeBron James, Anthony Davis and co. will finish the job is to be determined, but let’s take a trip down memory lane to find the last time the Lakers won a non-bubble postseason series.
When was the last time the Lakers won a non-bubble playoff series?
You have to go all the way back to the 2012 NBA Playoffs to find the last time the Lakers won a non-bubble playoff series.
After Los Angeles was swept by the Spurs in the first round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs, the franchise went on a six-year postseason drought. The Lakers bounced back to win the 2020 NBA title in the bubble, but they were eliminated by the Suns in the first round in 2021 and missed the playoffs altogether in 2022.
Back in 2012, Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol led Los Angeles to a first-round series win over the Nuggets. The series went seven games, with the Lakers closing out Denver on their home floor at the Staples Center.
It was a much different time, with each team’s starting five serving as a time capsule.
|Ramon Sessions||G||Ty Lawson|
|Kobe Bryant||G||Aaron Afflalo|
|Metta World Peace||F||Danilo Gallinari|
|Pau Gasol||F||Kenneth Faried|
|Andrew Bynum||C||Timofey Mozgov|
The Lakers were coached by the Kings reigning Coach of the Year, Mike Brown, while the Nuggets were coached by George Karl.
Los Angeles fell to the Oklahoma City Thunder in five games in the next round, with the young trio of Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and James Harden proving too much for Bryant and the Lakers.
Lakers recent playoff history
Here is a look at the Lakers’ playoff history since they won three-straight titles from 1999 to 2001.
|2021-22||Did not qualify|
|2020-21||Lost in First Round (Suns 4-2)|
|2019-20||Won NBA Finals (Heat 4-2)|
|2018-19||Did not qualify|
|2017-18||Did not qualify|
|2016-17||Did not qualify|
|2015-16||Did not qualify|
|2014-15||Did not qualify|
|2013-14||Did not qualify|
|2012-13||Lost in First Round (Spurs 4-0)|
|2011-12||Lost in West Semifinals (Thunder 4-1)|
|2010-11||Lost in West Semifinals (Mavericks 4-0)|
|2009-10||Won NBA Finals (Celtics 4-3)|
|2008-09||Won NBA Finals (Magic 4-1)|
|2007-08||Lost NBA Finals (Celtics 4-3)|
|2006-07||Lost in First Round (Suns 4-1)|
|2005-06||Lost in First Round (Suns 4-3)|
|2004-05||Did not qualify|
|2003-04||Lost in NBA Finals (Pistons 4-1)|
|2002-03||Lost in West Semifinals (Spurs 4-2)|
Published at Fri, 28 Apr 2023 09:30:04 +0000