Their jerseys, which feature the iconic purple-and-gold color scheme, are among the most popular in the league. The team’s history is rich, and many great players played for them. Let’s have a look at the best lakers players ever. The greatest player in Laker’s history is, by far, Kobe Bryant. The second-best player is Magic Johnson. Both won five titles with the Lakers, and both were Finals MVPs. Also, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar won five titles with the Lakers and got Finals MVP twice. Shaquille O’Neal was a three-time Finals MVP but only has three rings as a Laker.
1. Kobe Bryant
Kobe Bryant is the best lakers player of all time and one of the greatest basketball players ever. The country lost a great sports figure when Kobe died in a helicopter crash. Kobe’s career with the Lakers spanned 20 seasons, all of them spent with the purple and gold. Through two decades and one city, Kobe’s determination and hard work defined him as the greatest competitor in basketball (also known as the Black Mamba). He won five championships and also played 18 All-Star games. In 2015-16, Kobe concluded his career with a 60-point explosion against the Utah Jazz at Staples Center. Moreover, from his 81-point outburst against Toronto to his 60th point in that final game against Utah, Bryant’s career will always be remembered by Lakers fans as one of their own.
2. Magic Johnson
Magic Johnson is the second-best Los Angeles Lakers player of all time. He played with them until 1991 and then retired after he tested positive for HIV. Johnson returned to the Lakers in 1996 and played 32 games with the team before retiring again. In 2002, Johnson became part-owner of the Lakers. Johnson won five NBA championships with the Lakers during his career as a player. He is one of only two players in NBA history to win NCAA and NBA championships and also an Olympic gold medal. He was also a part of the 1992 Dream Team which won an Olympic gold medal.
3. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the third-best Lakers player of all time. He has won many awards and set numerous records during his career with the Lakers, including being the all-time leading scorer in NBA history. His impact on basketball is undeniable. Kareem excelled in basketball while he was in high school and college. After being traded to the Los Angeles Lakers in 1975, with his trademark “skyhook” shot, he led the Lakers to five championships and was also named MVP six times. After retiring in 1989, Abdul-Jabbar embarked on a second career as an author. In addition to his autobiography Giant Steps, he has written several books about African-American history and culture, as well as mystery novels for young adults.
4. Shaquille O’Neal
It is hard to think of a player who more perfectly fits his time than Shaquille O’Neal. His size and strength made him unstoppable on the court. The fourth-greatest player in Laker’s history is Shaquille O’Neal. Even though Shaq was only with the team for eight seasons (1996-2004), during that time, he led them to three championships (2000-2002) and was named Finals MVP all three times. He also helped lead them to another Finals appearance in 2004 (the team lost to the Detroit Pistons). The Lakers dynasty of the early 2000s wouldn’t have been possible without Shaq at their center.
5. Lebron James
James has been a major part of the Lakers since he joined them in 2018. He also managed to win a championship already for the Lakers. He is a great leader and is guiding his team to win more games this season. James has been to nine NBA Finals and won four times, and also has been named Finals MVP on three occasions. His first two seasons with Cleveland went down in history as major disappointments because he couldn’t bring home a championship for his hometown. However, upon joining Miami, James quickly became a superstar because of how dominant the Heat was back then. James is also considered one of the greatest players. He will soon surpass Kareem Abdul-Jabbar by becoming the highest scorer in the NBA.
6. Wilt Chamberlain
Wilt Chamberlain is the sixth-best Lakers player of all time. Chamberlain was a center for the Lakers from 1968 to 1973. During his career with the team, he won an NBA championship and one MVP award. Chamberlain was also a great rebounder. His rebounding average per game was higher than any Laker before or since. He also holds the record for most rebounds in a single game, with 41. Moreover, Chamberlain’s scoring average per game is second only to West’s among Lakers players. His scoring average per playoff game is also second only to West’s, and his combined regular season and playoff scoring average are the highest of any Laker ever.
7. Jerry West
After his junior year, West was drafted by the Lakers. West was already a highly skilled player when he joined the Lakers in 1960-61. That year marked his first appearance in an NBA All-Star game. West played for the Lakers for 14 seasons and also averaged 27 points per game (third-best in league history). He made the All-Star team every year and also helped the team to nine finals appearances, winning an NBA championship in 1972.
He was also “Mr. Clutch” in Game 3 of the 1969 finals. West scored 42 points after halftime to lead the Lakers over Boston and avoid falling into a 3–0 series hole. Furthermore, he put up 46 points, 13 assists, 12 rebounds, and three steals in 53 minutes of play. Most importantly, the NBA logo is designed based on his game.
Read also: The 5 Most Popular NBA Teams In The World
So here is the article on the best defenders in the NBA right now. Also, please let us know your thoughts in the comments. The source of the information is various Google searches. This topic is subject to change, therefore our website (www.beginbasketball.com) does not claim that the data is accurate.