Greatest Laker Of All Time?

Discussion in 'Lakers Discussion' started by Magic, Oct 15, 2014.

?

Who had the best career in Lakers history?

Poll closed Nov 12, 2014.
  1. Magic Johnson

    34.0%
  2. Kobe Bryant

    63.8%
  3. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. Jerry West

    2.1%
  5. Shaquille O'neal

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  6. Wilt Chamberlain

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Magic

    Magic - Rookie -

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2014
    Messages:
    74
    Likes Received:
    61
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Offline
    I know this subject been discussed dozens of times but why not have debate on who you think is the best player in Lakers franchise history. I feel Magic and Kobe are the two most important players of all-time to the Lakers franchise while Jerry West is most influential bringing both Shaq and Kobe here in 1996 was a stroke of brilliance. Shaq in his prime was more unstoppable then anyone else in the last 20 years. I have all the love for Magic for Showtime era and saving the NBA during 80's and the battles vs. Boston, but I give the slight edge to Kobe Bryant here he has played the most games, scored the most points, and tied with the most titles with Kareem and Magic and has longevity on his side over Magic Kobe has my vote here close call though.
     
    TIME likes this.
  2. revgen

    revgen - Lakers 6th Man -

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2014
    Messages:
    1,833
    Likes Received:
    4,203
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Offline
    Magic.

    The teams that the 00's Lakers faced pale in comparison to the teams Magic faced IMO.

    Besides the Spurs, Queens, and the KG-Pierce-Allen C Bags, the competition didn't really challenge us. Mostly because we had bigs they couldn't match up with. Whether it was Shaq's single-handed dominance in the early 2000's or the big man commitee of Pau/LO/Bynum in the later years, teams had problems trying to match up with the size we offered. At least teams in the 80's like the 76ers and C Bags had guys like Malone, Parish, and McHale to give Kareem some fits. Even the Rockets with their Hakeem/Sampson combo shut down the 80's Lakers one year.

    It's not Kobe's fault he played in a weaker watered-down league, but it is what it is.
     
  3. Magic

    Magic - Rookie -

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2014
    Messages:
    74
    Likes Received:
    61
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Offline
    I agree with Magic playing against tougher harder competition, but at the same time he played with more of a HOF/great players supporting cast than Kobe ever did such as Kareem, Worthy, Cooper, AC Green, etc. I also think Kobe was the much better defender Magic never was. I always felt like Magic was average to below on defense other than steals.
     
    revgen likes this.
  4. Kenzo

    Kenzo - Lakers All Star -

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2014
    Messages:
    6,291
    Likes Received:
    13,016
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Poland
    Online
    It's either Kobe or KAJ. That's a tough one...
     
  5. lakerjones

    lakerjones Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2014
    Messages:
    7,822
    Likes Received:
    22,765
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    La La land
    Offline
    Magic - undisputed leader of the team. Led his team to 5 championships in 9 years!! Made the Finals 9 out of 12 seasons. For the easy math, he led his team to the FINALS 3 out of every 4 years as a Laker. Against the likes of the 80's C Bags, Doc's Sixers, Bad Boy Pistons . . .

    It's always Magic for me. The team was great, but many of the parts were interchangeable/interchanged. The constants were Magic who led the team and of course the Cap. But the Cap couldn't do it on the Lakers before Magic got there. Magic blew the doors off this thing. He ushered in a whole new era of basketball. He was the guy. He impacted basketball in a massive way that transcended the sport.

    I'm not saying Magic is "better" as an all around player than Kobe. But when I think of one guy and what he represented to the organization, to Los Angeles and beyond it's Magic all the way. Of all the players in the league he was the most responsible for bringing basketball out of the gutter of the tape delayed Finals. He was the most entertaining and charismatic player I've ever seen. He was Showtime.
     
  6. therealdeal

    therealdeal Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2014
    Messages:
    28,477
    Likes Received:
    62,066
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Offline
    I said Magic too.

    It's weird though that three people say Magic in this thread, but only two votes are in for him up top. :D

    The record aside, Magic helped bring this franchise to where it is today. For as much as West did for us, he only brought us one title. Magic lead the way for the Los Angeles Lakers and really helped create the legacy that we are now. Kobe prolonged it and I think when it's all said and done Kobe could easily be considered the greatest Laker of all time. I wouldn't even try to argue against it. Right now though, I'm still giving the edge to Magic.
     
    lakerjones and Juronimo like this.
  7. TIME

    TIME Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2014
    Messages:
    4,932
    Likes Received:
    18,798
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Occupation:
    Lifelong Lakers fan.
    Location:
    LaLa Land
    Offline
    All excellent points revgen. On the other hand, Kobe's 2000, 2009, 2010 teams were no where near as strong as all of Magic's 5 ring teams.

    I am, and always will be a huge Magic fan. He changed the game. Hard to argue against a player that changes the game. But I'm going to go with Kobe, by a narrow margin. Responsible for the same number of rings, played on weaker teams, carried more of the actual load than Magic ever did, and the final factor as the OP mentioned is sheer longevity to give me as a fan more enjoyment over time.
     
    revgen, Punk-101 and lakerfan2 like this.
  8. John3:16

    John3:16 Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2014
    Messages:
    6,577
    Likes Received:
    15,590
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Occupation:
    CEO - Big Baller Brand
    Offline
    Magic had GREAT talent around him. 5 rings.

    Kobe had a great player in Shaq and a very good player in Gasol. 5 rings.

    Magic and Kareem are 2 of my all time favorite players, but the other player in my personal top 3 is the best Laker.
     
    trodgers likes this.
  9. LTLakerFan

    LTLakerFan - Lakers Legend -

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2014
    Messages:
    27,757
    Likes Received:
    46,193
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    So Cal
    Offline
    Maybe can be more eloquent later about the fan experience for me having Kobe all these years, Magic too......but how about firstly ..... SHEER LAKERS NUMBERS (no particular order)

    Years. Points. Championships. Thrills. Injuries ( including "serious") played through. Hours of Preparation and Practice. Amazing, near Impossible to believe .... "Moments". High Scoring Games. Points in One Game. All Star Appearances and MVPs. Number of Games 110% Effort (guts spilled on floor).

    I will probably think of more bullet points later but this is good enough for now. By virtue of his GAME and LONGEVITY with one team, the Lakers ...... in my opinion Kobe is the Greatest Laker of All Time.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2014
    trodgers, BigDan24 and Magic like this.
  10. Juronimo

    Juronimo - Lakers Starter -

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2014
    Messages:
    2,035
    Likes Received:
    5,428
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Occupation:
    plays with one's and zero's
    Location:
    the sky's the limit
    Online
    IMO Magic is the greatest of all time.
    Magic revolutionized the game of basketball.
     
    lakerjones likes this.
  11. Magic

    Magic - Rookie -

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2014
    Messages:
    74
    Likes Received:
    61
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Offline
    Good replies so far. I'm little shocked no one has voted for Kareem yet.
     
  12. LTLakerFan

    LTLakerFan - Lakers Legend -

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2014
    Messages:
    27,757
    Likes Received:
    46,193
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    So Cal
    Offline
    ^^^ He was a Buck first. Not his fault, and he was a GREAT Laker. But sheer numbers as a lifetime Laker in all those areas above..... it has to be Kobe. Enjoy him while we can for the rest of his winding down career.
     
  13. gcclaker

    gcclaker Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2014
    Messages:
    8,328
    Likes Received:
    18,656
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Wherever I am at the moment...
    Offline
    Bryant was the much better athlete, scorer and defender who could single handedly will his team to win even if they were inferior to the competition. Johnson was the ultimate orchestrator who controlled the game and made his teammates accountable. He was a head coach on the floor. Different players who influenced the game in different ways. Have them switch places and neither will be as effective. Bryant would have some difficulty adjusting with Abdul-Jabbar, Worthy and Scott. Johnson can't simply set-up a Brown, a George or a Walton to make plays to win. It is a matter of choice.

    I prefer witnessing a balanced game with EVERYONE on the team involved as one so I would lean towards Johnson even as much as I have enjoyed Bryant's herculean feats. Nine trips...five rings. Three lost due to team wide injuries and one glaring choke-job. Even helped place an All-Star MVP hardware for Chambers and Sampson in their dinner table.

    Abdul-Jabbar? Consistency. Professionalism. Focus. He had them all in spades plus the Skyhook is the one in the holster that can be counted on when the game is in the balance.

    That's my 1-2-3.
     
    lakerjones, DoMinJoon and revgen like this.
  14. five6two

    five6two - Rookie -

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2014
    Messages:
    101
    Likes Received:
    80
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Offline
    This is a tough one. My instinct is to go with either Magic or Kareem due to the showtime era. Magic with his great assists and floor general vision. Or how about Kareem and his sky hook/all time leading scorer? But, I'm going with Kobe for his longevity with the Lakers and absolute mad man will to win. I mean c'mon, almost 20 seasons as a laker, that right there is enough to sway my vote.
     
  15. RasAlgethi

    RasAlgethi Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2014
    Messages:
    1,394
    Likes Received:
    3,409
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Laker Land
    Offline
    Pretty much why I would go with Kobe over Magic. Its so close though, the fact that we can even have this type of conversation speaks to the greatness of the Lakers.
     
    lakerjones likes this.
  16. John3:16

    John3:16 Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2014
    Messages:
    6,577
    Likes Received:
    15,590
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Occupation:
    CEO - Big Baller Brand
    Offline
    Elgin, West, Wilt, Worthy, and Shaq would be #1 on most teams lists. Don't even crack our conversation. Until now.
     
    lakerjones likes this.
  17. raviator

    raviator - Rookie -

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2014
    Messages:
    967
    Likes Received:
    2,279
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Offline
    I gave Kobe my vote by a narrow margin. I too consider Magic my favorite Laker of all time but what sold it for me was 81 points. No matter how you slice it, that's just downright ridiculous good.
     
  18. The Original 81

    The Original 81 - Rookie -

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2014
    Messages:
    400
    Likes Received:
    732
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Stat Nylan, NY
    Offline
    I feel it's tough for me to answer this question as I've only watched the Lakers since the early 2000s. I was only 14 when Shaq was traded! I started really getting into basketball right around that time, so I've really only watched Kobe in terms of a game by game basis.

    To me, it's Kobe/Magic, and then Jerry/Kareem right after that. So many legends to choose from though
     
  19. therealdeal

    therealdeal Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2014
    Messages:
    28,477
    Likes Received:
    62,066
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Offline
    Imagine if Shaq didn't leave on such bad terms... he might have four or five rings here and be right up there in the conversation as well.

    Oh and by the way this one guy named Wilt Chamberlain played here and nobody even talks about him being in the conversation. Just absolutely crazy.
     
    lakerjones likes this.
  20. five6two

    five6two - Rookie -

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2014
    Messages:
    101
    Likes Received:
    80
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Offline
    I think if Shaq never left and him and Kobe maintained the chemistry that made them that unstoppable duo, he would definitely be in the "Lakers Mount Rushmore" category. I really like Shaq, so unstoppable in his prime. I'm glad I was able to witness him as Laker, truly kept the standards of what a true center is. Even to this day, there is no one like him.
     
    therealdeal and lakerjones like this.

Share This Page