Los Angeles Lakers: 3 midseason takeaways from 2019-20

(Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
(Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Los Angeles Lakers
(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) /

Now that the Los Angeles Lakers have reached the midway point of the 2019-20 season, how are they doing? Have they reached or exceeded expectations? And what factors provide the best clue regarding the outlook for the entire season?

To begin with, the Los Angeles Lakers posted an outstanding mid-season record of 33-8, which is a .805 winning percentage. They have a 4-5 game lead for the best record in the Western Conference over the Nuggets, Jazz and Clippers and sport the second-best record in the NBA with two more losses than the Milwaukee Bucks.

Halfway into the season, they have clearly exceeded the forecasts of most pundits, many of whom predicted the Lakers would finish fourth or fifth in the West. Much can happen in the season’s second half, but even the most neurotic fan must be pleased with how well the team has fared so far.

Obviously, the combination of all-stars Anthony Davis and LeBron James  has worked out to near-perfection. The ultimate fate of the team will depend largely on the health of the pair come playoff time. But of course the same can be said about the biggest stars of any contending team.

The Bucks won’t win the title unless Giannis Antetokounmpo is at or near full strength, the Nuggets won’t contend without Nikola Jokic, the Clippers need Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, the 76ers must have Joel Embiid, and so on for every would-be champion.

But let’s examine how well the Lakers have done in three areas that might foretell whether or not the franchise will earn its 17th championship trophy this June.