The Los Angeles Lakers organization is one that is rich with history. While they may have missed the playoffs for the past three straight seasons, they are the proud owners of 16 NBA championships, which is the second-most in the league. The team is currently dead-set on building for the future, but they want to ensure that they still acknowledge their illustrious past.
With that in mind, they have decided to use throwback jerseys in the style of the ones worn during the 1986-87 championship season.
According to the team’s Twitter account, beginning tonight, the jerseys will be worn against three teams that the Lakers defeated en route to the title: the Golden State Warriors, Denver Nuggets, and of course, Boston Celtics:
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) November 3, 2016
In recent years the Lakers have been accused of spending too much time living in the past, referencing their history too often in free agent meetings and other functions while not fully embracing the analytics movement. The NBA is a “what-have-you-done-lately” league, and while teams often romanticize the past, failure to adapt to the times can be a major detriment to a franchise.
Fortunately, with the hiring of new head coach Luke Walton, who ironically received most of his coaching experience as an assistant for the Warriors, the Lakers have taken steps to modernize their way of thinking. That said, a balance must be struck, as a history as impressive as the Lakers’ simply cannot be forgotten.
Of course, we also have to point out that the throwback jerseys look fantastic, and will certainly bring in revenue for the team and league. One can only hope that they don’t opt to wear the 1986-87 team’s shorts as well, which they infamously did in 2007.