Lakers Nation Roundtable: Will The Lakers Surpass Last Year’s Win Total?
Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports
Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

Last season was one of the worst in the history of the Los Angeles Lakers as the team finished a dismal 27-55. Coming into this season, the team and fans were all hoping that the team would at least make an improvement.

Unfortunately, things haven’t gone the Lakers way this season either and after the team’s most recent loss to the San Antonio Spurs, the Lakers sit at 12-32. At this time last year, the Lakers were slightly better at 16-28.

Once again, injuries have dismantled the Lakers as Steve Nash and Julius Randle were both lost early in the season and now Kobe Bryant might be finished for the remainder of the year as well.

The Lakers have played the toughest schedule in the NBA so far this year, but now that the season is more than halfway over it begs the question: Will the Lakers surpass their win total from last season? This is what our experts had to say:

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Ryan Ward (@Lakers_Examiner): No. I don’t think the Lakers will surpass or match last season’s win total of 27. In fact, with Kobe Bryant going down with a torn rotator cuff which will likely end his season, I believe the team might not win more than a total of 20 games.

With Kobe still available, and missing games from time to time, I thought the team would win 26 games this season after looking at the schedule.

Unfortunately, the Lakers struggling the way they are couldn’t have come at a worse time. The Western Conference is stacked with talented teams from top to bottom and even the San Antonio Spurs could miss the playoffs this season.

The only way I see this team surpassing last season’s win total would be a blockbuster trade, but that seems highly unlikely with the Lakers not having the desirable trade assets that could bring in a star player.

At this point in time, I believe this season is a lost cause. The best case scenario would be shutting Kobe down for the year, hoping to keep their draft pick and making a big splash in free agency.

Russell Valenzuela (@RussVal4): So far this season, the Los Angeles Lakers have struggled to get wins. Comparing this year’s team to the one that played last season, the Lakers have compiled less victories through the same amount of games.

Despite the rough start, there is reason to believe the Lakers can still improve their mark and best last season’s record. The team has faced a tough schedule during the first half of the season and should see an easier path in the next couple of weeks.

More games against Eastern Conference teams will be coming up, and the Lakers should be able to compete and come away with some wins during those match-ups.

This under the assumption that injuries don’t begin to thin the roster just as did midway through last season. With news of Kobe Bryant having a torn rotator cuff, the Lakers are likely to be without him for the foreseeable future. The team has been without Bryant for stretches for the season, so his absence shouldn’t hurt too much on the court.

As long as there are no more major injuries to any Laker, the team could win more games this year than they did last season.

Corey Hansford (@TheeCoreyH): I know it is a long shot, but I still think the Lakers can match or surpass last season’s win total of 27.

The Lakers have played the toughest schedule in the league so far this year and still have many winnable games. The Lakers have two games each against teams like Philadelphia, New York, Brooklyn, Minnesota, Sacramento, Denver, and Utah as well as a game each against Orlando and Boston.

At times the team has played well which has resulted in wins against the likes of Golden State, San Antonio, and Atlanta so it isn’t out of the question for the team to steal a game here or there against some of the elites remaining.

Heading down the stretch of the season, many top teams begin resting players as they prepare for the playoffs and the Lakers could get a win or two near the end. It may not be likely, but I’m still holding out hope.

Kevin Chan (@Kevin_Cruiser): At this point in the season it seems that the Lakers are destined to finish worse than they did last year (27-55). The team currently sits at 12-32 and they received bad news today that their best player may be sidelined for a while due to injury. Kobe has a torn rotator cuff and his availability for the rest of the year is up in the air.

This doesn’t bode well for the Lakers who have struggled with and without Kobe all year. Their defense has regressed from last season which is a surprise. One can expect that their offense will regress with Kobe sidelined as well.

As things stand I don’t expect the team to win more than 25 games this season – I wouldn’t be surprised if they didn’t win more than 20 games. The silver lining is that they’ll have a better chance of keeping their first-round pick if they tank. Their first-round pick is top-five protected, otherwise it goes to Phoenix. Breathe deep Lakers fans, this might turn out for the better in the long-run.

Nathan Kim (@Kimchiz): Last year, the Lakers finished with a record of 27-55. Unfortunately for Laker fans, this season might turn out worse than last season. In fact, I don’t think that the Lakers can do better than last year.

I wish I could say otherwise, but the Lakers have not shown any promise, especially as of late. The Lakers are currently on a seven game losing streak and are on the path to lose many more games.

As the season began, I thought that the team just needed to learn to play team basketball. Kobe needed to shoot less, and the ball had to keep moving on the offense. My mentality changed as I saw the season progress. Kobe became a facilitator and the offense became more evenly distributed. Still, the Lakers kept losing games.

Simply put, I think that the Lakers lack talent. There’s only so much that this team can do. They are consistently out skilled against the opposing team, especially at the point guard position. Furthermore, Kobe is a shadow of his former self. He sits out numerous games at a time and when he does play, it doesn’t really matter. At 36 years of age he is still the best player on the team, but that isn’t saying much on this roster. It also doesn’t help that he recently tore his rotator cuff.

The Lakers will tank, whether they try to or not. The good news is that they will be able to keep their protected draft pick. The Lakers are in major need of a complete overhaul if the team is even to dream about championship contention. This all depends on what the Lakers do in the off-season. This season however, is as good as gone.


Lakers Kobe Bryant Discusses Future Possibility Of Being Shutdown

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