Los Angeles Lakers: Ranking the best title-winning second stars in team history

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(Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images) – Los Angeles Lakers

4. Pau Gasol

Going from the oldest member of this list to the most recent, Pau Gasol checks in as the fourth greatest second superstar in Los Angeles Lakers history. Gasol is the only player on this list that is not a Hall of Famer, however, it is more than likely that Gasol will get into the Hall of Fame once he does eventually retire.

Gasol is a very important part of Lakers history that should never be ignored. He does not have the superstardom that other players on this list have and he certainly is not the flashiest player in NBA history.

However, he is not only responsible for the Lakers’ last two NBA Championships, but he impacted Kobe Bryant‘s legacy so significantly, even if he was just the second star behind Bryant.

If the Lakers never would have traded for Pau Gasol one of two things would have happened: Kobe would have eventually left (which is something that seemingly almost happened several times in his career as a Laker) and he would have pursued title gold elsewhere.

Or, he would have stayed put and unless the team managed to pull off a different trade for a second star, they likely would not have won two championships, let alone one.

Kobe would have had three rings, one fewer than Shaquille O’Neal, and while he would have still been beloved by Laker fans, it would have hurt the legacy that he was building.

Gasol was an all-star power forward with the Los Angeles Lakers and came up with some big performances in the playoffs, most notably in Game 7 against the Boston Celtics in the 2010 NBA Finals.

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