How the L.A. Lakers Have Seventeen Championship Titles


(Image Credit: Erik S Lesser/EPA)

Ailene Dominguez, Writer

Some of you might wonder, what? How do they have so many championship titles? Well, today we will learn how! The LA Lakers have been around for a very long time

In 1947-1948 they had their very first season when they finally entered the National Basketball League. In 1947-1948, they had their very first big star, George Mikan. My sources state that “Mikan was a 6’ 10” giant of a man who had dominated college basketball in his four years at DePaul. He joined the Chicago American Gears at the end of the 1945-46 season, then lead the gears to the NBL championship the following year.” Maurice White, president of the American Gear Company and owner of the Chicago team, pulled the club out of the NBL before the 1947-1948 campaign. White had the dream to establish the Professional Basketball League of American 24-team circuit in which he would own all the teams and all the arenas. The new league, however, barely lasted a month, and the players got divided between the 11 NBL franchises. Mikan landed purely by chance for the first-year Minneapolis Lakers but did not need him as the Lakers were a good team before Mikan entered by luck as they had a good player before named Jim Pollard. 

Their trainer was John Kundla. He used to be hired by the University of Minnesota. But once the word was out about, Mikan was sure to be the coach and help them. According to my sources, “Minneapolis walked away with the NBL crown that season. After winning the Western Division by 13 games, the team disposed of the Oshkosh All-Stars, the Tri-Cities Blackhawks, and the Rochester Royals.” My sources also say, “Mikan paces the circuit in scoring during the regular season with 21.3 points per game and was tops in postseason play with an average of 24.4 points per contest.” 

So the Lakers won their very first championship title in 1949. In the first year, the NBA had 17 teams. They all got separated by the best performance to the least and got split into three groups. The Minneapolis teams got put in the Central Division, where the best teams played. The Lakers had also upped their game than their previous season and had a solid trio of good players such as Vern Mikkelsen, Slater Martin, and Bud Grant. They were a strong team in a good position in the central division. 

During its time, the franchise struggled for respectability four of the first years. The inaugural campaign of 1946-47 yielded 22-388, a record, and a final tie with the Huskies of Toronto in the BAA’s Division Eastern. A 6-8 center, Connie Simmons, led the Celtics in with a score of 10.3 points per game. The next year, the team did marginally better, managing to make the playoffs with a record of 20-28 in their first appearing. The Celtics lost Game 1 to the Chicago Stags in the postseason contest, On March 31, 1948, back to defeat the Stags, 81-77, to assert the first-ever playoff victory for the franchise. Their dreams of a playoff. However, it was short-lived, as the Stags eliminated the two Celtics nights later. A new coach, Alvin Doggie, was employed by Brown for the 1948-49 campaign. Julian, who led Holy Cross to the NCAA Championship that year, before. But the findings were pretty much similar. The roster for Boston got packed with little-remembered players like Gene Stump, Garfinkel, the Dutch, and Hank Beenders.

 Many years ago, they were a good and strong team; they won their titles in the years of 1949, 1950, 1052, 1953, 1954, 1972, 1980, 1982, 1985, 1987, 1988, 2000,2001, 2002, 2009, 2010, 2020. There was a ten-year gap where they did not win a title until they finally won again in 2020. With the impact of Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gigi’s deaths weighing on them, the players pushed through and took another championship title in memory of Kobe and Gigi. 

The LA Lakers won against the Miami Heat this year. Miami had not made the playoff since 2013 and made it again in 2020. The LA Lakers,106 with Miami Heat 93. The game was pretty close and intense, but the Lakers showed commitment to the game and won the 2020 title. The Miami Heat did a good job as well but was not able to make enough plays and get the ball in the net. They did their best, and there is always room for improvement. Winning a title does not mean anything. Just because they got one does not mean they are the best. There is room for improvement and getting better; whether that is individually working with the team, working together, and improving upon what they need to improve on. But besides that, the LA Lakers did a good job and may win many more championships.