The Lakers are on the brink of returning to the Western Conference Finals although not for the same reasons. Don’t get me wrong, Kobe Bryant is still THE reason why the Lakers are a series away from the finals but LA does not overly rely on him to win games anymore. Pau Gasol, Lamar Odom, Andrew Bynum and of course Derek Fisher are taking on bigger roles and taking loads off Kobe’s shoulders.
The last three seasons in the Western Conference have been dominated by the Los Angeles Lakers as they have made it all the way to the NBA Finals in two consecutive seasons and look like they could very well do it again this year.
Tough match-up for the Lakers. Oklahoma City’s talented young core of Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and Jeff Green will wreck havoc on the Lakers’ currently confused defense. There are two things intriguing about this series: Kobe Bryant, the Lakers best player, can be slowed down by the Thunders best defender, Thabo Sefolosha.
It would be hard to argue that the defending NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers aren’t the team to beat in the Western Conference playoffs as they are stacked with some of the most talented players in the week and led by arguably the best all-around player in Kobe Bryant.
Unlike the Eastern Conference, all eight teams in the Western Conference playoffs are legit and can compete with the best of the best in the NBA.
The Thunder will make their first playoff appearance in its young existence. Oklahoma City is currently the sixth seed in the west but are locked in a three-way battle with the Portland Trail Blazers and San Antonio Spurs.
The Western Conference in the NBA is been arguably the toughest conference of the two over the last decade or so. Every single season it seems like the majority of the title contenders in the league, the West like the San Antonio Spurs, Denver Nuggets and the Los Angeles Lakers.
With only a few weeks left in the NBA regular, the best teams in the league are gearing up for the playoffs and this year it should be as entertaining as ever as we will see some great matchups, especially in the Western Conferences!
Coming into this NBA season the defending NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers look like they had a hell of a chance of competing for another NBA title in a repeat campaign.
With the playoffs just around the corner in the NBA most people will be crowning LeBron James’ Cleveland Cavaliers and the defending NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers as the two teams destine to make it to the NBA Finals.