Best Los Angeles Lakers teams all-time: 8. 1981-82
Starters: Magic Johnson, Norm Nixon, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Jamaal Wilkes, Kurt Rambis.
Bench: Bob McAdoo, Michael Cooper, Clay Johnson, Mike McGee, Mark Landsberger, Jim Brewer, Eddie Jordan
The 1982 champion Lakers were a special team because Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was at the tail-end of his prime, and Magic Johnson was at the start of his. By this point in their careers, they were both already Finals MVPs and their dynamic duo overmatched the rest of the NBA.
Kareem had already played with one of the best point guards to ever play the game in Oscar Robertson, but Magic Johnson was developing into a player the NBA had never seen before. A 6’9″ point guard that could throw passes like no other and had court vision to make it seem like he had eyes in the back of his head.
This team also included two other Hall of Famers as well with Jamaal Wilkes’ crazy jump shot draining threes from the corner and big man Bob McAdoo coming off the bench to solidify their depth.
What this team also had that the rest of the Showtime teams on the list did not include is Norm Nixon, who was also a very capable playmaking point guard who ran the show before Magic joined the team. Kurt Rambis and Michael Cooper are other recognizable role players from this championship squad that continued on to win multiple championships with the franchise.
Notable accomplishments for this team include finishing the regular season as the number one seed in the west with 57 wins. Their greatest accomplishment though is obviously winning the championship in 1982 and only losing two games in the playoffs, defeating the 76ers lead by Julius Erving in 6 games.