Hide Bonus Offers
#2 50% Up To $250 Visit Site Bovada Sports
#3 125% Up To $2,500 Visit Site BetUS
#4 100% Up To $500 Visit Site Everygame
#5 100% Up To $1,000 Visit Site MyBookie

Franchise History of the Los Angeles Lakers

By Jennifer Hassan in NBA
| December 10, 2020 5:42 am PDT
History of the Los Angeles Lakers

The Lakers have had more than their fair share of attention…in fact, they tend to hog the spotlight whenever they are around.

And how could it be otherwise, when such luminaries as Shaquille O’Neal, Magic Johnson, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar have worn the purple and gold.

There was a time when Las Vegas sportsbooks were chock full of sports fans ignoring horse races, ignoring boxing, and focusing only on Lakers games. Now that online sportsbooks are proliferating, Lakers fans are watching their team action closely, waiting for the next big upswing.

Lakers History Overview

minneapolis lakers logo

The Lakers have been around since the mid-1940s, only a few years after horse-drawn carts vanished from Los Angeles roadways.

However, the Lakers were not in Los Angeles at this time. The team began in the “State of 10,000 Lakes,” also known as Minnesota.

The Lakers stayed in this land of lakes from 1947 to 1960, upon which time they quickly relocated to sunny California in time for the start of the 1960 – 1961 season.

Here is some insight into how and when this team was created.

Who Founded the Los Angeles Lakers?

There had been a basketball in Detroit during World War Two, known as the Detroit Gems. The Gems were a member of the NBL—the National Basketball League, which had been formed in 1946.

When the Gems shut down as an organization, two gentlemen from Minneapolis bought the franchise and brought it home.

These men were Morris Chalfen, a sporting event promoter, and Ben Berger, who owned a chain of movie theaters.

They named their new team the Lakers, and history was made.

The Lakers are now worth billions, but Chalfen and Berger bought the franchise for $15,000.

When Did the Lakers Join the NBA?

As noted above, the Lakers were born after the Detroit Gems folded. The Gems had been members of the NBL.

Fortunately for the new Lakers owners, the NBL became the NBA, stayed alive as a league, and ushered in the era of supreme basketball success that we know today.

Lakers Playoff History

The Lakers dominated early basketball, taking the NBA title again and again. In fact, the NBA playoffs could well be called, “Come play the Lakers!”

(Although, the Lakers did lose to the Globetrotters back in 1948!)

Their record of attending postseason is not unbroken, but the gaps are few and far between until the 2013 – 2014 season, when the team went through a years-long dry spell, in which they made no appearance after the regular seasons.

Looking at the playoff results below, you will see that in the era of the late 1950s through the late 1960s, it was the Celtics who took the title, again and again, before handing their crown to the Knicks.

These playoff history statistics offer a fascinating glimpse into the world of sport. For instance, you will note that in 1972 the Lakers defeated the Knicks in the NBA finals, 4 – 1. Then, in the following year, the Knicks roared back, filled with vengeance and determination, to defeat the Lakers in the NBA finals, also 4 – 1.

These are not just numbers and dates, but a tale of team psyche, coaching and player roster adjustments, and motivation.

Season Results
1948 – 1949 Defeated Capitols in NBA finals, 4 – 2
1949 – 1950 Defeated Nationals in NBA finals, 4 – 2
1951 – 1952 Defeated Knicks in NBA finals, 4 – 3
1952 – 1953 Defeated Knicks in NBA finals, 4 – 1
1953 – 1954 Defeated Nationals in NBA finals, 4 – 3
1954 – 1955 Lost to Pistons in conference finals, 3 – 1
1955 – 1956 Lost to Hawks in conference semi-finals, 2 – 1
1956 – 1957 Lost to Hawks in conference finals, 3 – 0
1958 – 1959 Lost to Celtics in NBA finals, 4 – 0
1959 – 1960 Lost to Hawks in conference finals, 4 – 3
1960 – 1961 Lost to Hawks in conference finals, 4 – 3
1961 – 1962 Lost to Celtics in NBA finals, 4 – 3
1962 – 1963 Lost to Celtics in NBA finals, 4 – 2
1963 – 1964 Lost to Hawks in conference semi-finals, 3 – 2
1964 – 1965 Lost to Celtics in NBA finals, 4 – 1
1965 – 1966 Lost to Celtics in NBA finals, 4 – 3
1966 – 1967 Lost to Warriors in conference semi-finals, 3 – 0
1967 – 1968 Lost to Celtics in NBA finals, 4 – 2
1968 – 1969 Lost to Celtics in NBA finals, 4 – 3
1969 – 1970 Lost to Knicks in NBA finals, 4 – 3
1970 – 1971 Lost to Bucks in conference semi-finals, 4 – 1
1971 – 1972 Defeated Knicks in NBA finals, 4 – 1
1972 – 1973 Lost to Knicks in NBA finals, 4 – 1
1973 – 1974 Lost to Bucks in conference semi-finals, 4 – 1
1976 – 1977 Lost to Trail Blazers in conference finals, 4 – 0
1977 – 1978 Lost to SuperSonics in opening round, 2 – 1
1978 – 1979 Lost to SuperSonics in conference semi-finals, 4 – 1
1979 – 1980 Defeated Sixers in NBA finals, 4 – 2
1980 – 1981 Lost to Rockets in opening round, 2 – 1
1981 – 1982 Defeated Sixers in NBA finals, 4 – 2
1982 – 1983 Lost to Sixers in NBA finals, 4 – 0
1983 – 1984 Lost to Celtics in NBA finals, 4 – 3
1984 – 1985 Defeated Celtics in NBA finals, 4 – 2
1985 – 1986 Lost to Rockets in conference finals, 4 – 1
1986 – 1987 Defeated Celtics in NBA finals, 4 – 2
1987 – 1988 Defeated Pistons in NBA finals, 4 – 3
1988 – 1989 Lost to Pistons in NBA finals, 4 – 0
1989 – 1990 Lost to Suns in conference semi-finals, 4 – 1
1990 – 1991 Lost to Bulls in NBA finals, 4 – 1
1991 – 1992 Lost to Trail Blazers in opening round, 3 – 1
1992 – 1993 Lost to Suns in opening round, 3 – 2
1994 – 1995 Lost to Spurs in conference semi-finals, 4 – 2
1995 – 1996 Lost to Rockets in opening round, 3 – 1
1996 – 1997 Lost to Jazz in conference semi-finals, 4 – 1
1997 – 1998 Lost to Jazz in conference finals, 4 – 0
1998 – 1999 Lost to Spurs in conference semi-finals, 4 – 0
1999 – 2000 Defeated Pacers in NBA finals, 4 – 2
2000 – 2001 Defeated Sixers in NBA finals, 4 – 1
2001 – 2002 Defeated Nets in NBA finals, 4 – 0
2002 – 2003 Lost to Spurs in conference semi-finals, 4 – 2
2003 – 2004 Lost to Pistons in NBA finals, 4 – 1
2005 – 2006 Lost to Suns in opening round, 4 – 3
2006 – 2007 Lost to Suns in opening round, 4 – 1
2007 – 2008 Lost to Celtics in opening round, 4 – 2
2008 – 2009 Defeated Magic in NBA finals, 4 – 1
2009 – 2010 Defeated Celtics in NBA finals, 4 – 3
2010 – 2011 Lost to Mavericks in conference semi-finals, 4 – 0
2011 – 2012 Lost to Thunder in conference semi-finals, 4 – 1
2012 – 2013 Lost to Spurs in opening round, 4 – 0
2019 – 2020 playoffs still in progress

CLICK TO SEE MORE

Los Angeles Lakers Head Coach History

Magic Johnson, as the coach of the Lakers.

Here are the men who have coached the team that has become a legend. Even the great Magic Johnson had a stint in charge.

The very first coach of the team, who also did the third coaching stint, was a man named John Kundla.

Kundla has been named one of the Top 10 coaches in the history of the league. Born in 1916, Kundla passed away in 2017, at age 101.

He lived to see his team go from awkward Minneapolis rookies to the stars of the world.

Tenure Coach Prior Experience
1948 – 1958 John Kundla Univ. of St. Thomas coach
1958 George Mikan player, Lakers
1958 – 1959 John Kundla see above
1959 – 1960 John Castellani Seattle Univ. coach
1960 Jim Pollard La Salle coach
1960 – 1967 Fred Schaus player, Knicks
1967 – 1969 Butch van Breda Kolff Princeton coach
1969 – 1971 Joe Mullaney player, Celtics
1971 – 1976 Bill Sharman Warriors coach
1976 – 1979 Jerry West player, Lakers
1979 Jack McKinney Trail Blazers coach
1979 – 1981 Paul Westhead La Salle coach
1981 – 1990 Pat Riley player, Suns
1990 – 1992 Mike Dunleavy Bucks asst. coach
1992 – 1994 Randy Pfund Westmont College coach
1994 Bill Bertka Jazz asst. coach
1994 Magic Johnson player, Lakers
1994 – 1999 Del Harris Bucks coach
1999 Bill Bertka see above
1999 Kurt Rambis player, Kings
1999 – 2004 Phil Jackson Bulls coach
2004 – 2005 Rudy Tomjanovich Rockets coach
2005 Frank Hamblen Bulls asst. coach
2005 – 2011 Phil Jackson see above
2011 – 2012 Mike Brown Cavaliers coach
2012 Bernie Bickerstaff Bulls asst. coach
2012 – 2014 Mike D’Antoni Suns coach
2014 – 2016 Byron Scott Cavaliers coach
2016 – 2019 Luke Walton Warriors asst. coach
2019 – present Frank Vogel Magic coach

CLICK TO SEE MORE

To Wrap Things Up…

The Lakers attract fans, famous fans. Famous fans equally sold-out games. Sold out games mean higher ticket prices, which means the team grosses millions of dollars per game.

The Lakers are a wealthy team, and wealth attracts talent. And thus the cycle continues. This is a dominant force in the NBA, and we don’t anticipate that changing anytime soon.

LEAVE YOUR COMMENT

*

Back to top