Back in 2009, the Los Angeles Lakers were reloaded with talented young players while being led by Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and Derek Fisher.
After a disappointing loss to the Boston Celtics in the NBA Finals a year earlier, the Lakers were more motivated than ever to win another title. Standing in their way was the up-and-coming Orlando Magic with a young Dwight Howard coming into his own as one of the best players in the NBA.
Even though the Magic were able to beat Kevin Garnett’s Celtics and hold off LeBron James’ Cleveland Cavaliers on their way to the Finals, Dwight and company were simply outmatched against Kobe’s Lakers. The face of the Lakers franchise finally had the pieces around him to contend with any team in the league while Phil Jackson called the shots from the sidelines.
Although arguably not as dominant as the Lakers squads during the Kobe-Shaq era, this team was firing on all cylinders with Lamar Odom, Andrew Bynum, and Trevor Ariza helping propel this team to victory. Everything came together for the Lakers on June 14, 2009, when Kobe and company beat the Magic in Game 5 on their home floor in convincing fashion, 99-86.
The win gave the Lakers their 15th NBA championship in franchise history while Jackson won the 10th NBA title as a head coach. Kobe and Fisher earned their fourth rings while Gasol won his first.