What do you get when you mix some of the finest players in NBA history with 17 NBA championships, 32 conference titles, 24 division titles, and other achievements? You receive the Los Angeles Lakers, one of the league's most renowned and prosperous organizations. The Lakers were founded in 1947 and relocated to Los Angeles from Minneapolis in 1960. They have selected some of the greatest players in the history of the league, who have made an impact on the club and the league. The top five NBA players selected by the Los Angeles Lakers are as follows:
A dynamic big from North Carolina who had won a national title and the Final Four Most Outstanding Player Award as a junior, James Worthy was selected first overall in the 1982 NBA Draft. He played for the Lakers for the entirety of his 12-year career, during which he was a seven-time All-Star, twice named to the NBA Third Team, and the Finals MVP in 1988. He also participated in the Showtime period alongside Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, which saw the Lakers win three NBA titles in 1985, 1987, and 1988. With the Lakers, he scored 17.6 points, grabbed 5.1 rebounds, and made 3 assists each game.
Legendary guard Jerry West, a two-time All-American and national runner-up as a senior at West Virginia, was selected in the second round of the 1960 NFL Draft. He played for the Lakers for the entirety of his 14-year career, during which he was a 14-time All-Star, a member of the All-NBA First Team 10 times, a member of the All-Defensive First Team four times, and an NBA champion in 1972. Despite losing to the Boston Celtics, he was the only player to win the Finals MVP award in 1969.
Elgin Baylor, a Hall of Famer and prolific scorer, was selected first overall in the 1958 NBA Draft out of Seattle, where he had previously helped his squad to the Final Four as a junior. He played for the Minneapolis/Los Angeles Lakers for the entirety of his 14-year career, during which he was a Rookie of the Year in 1959, an All-Star 11 times, and a member of the NBA First Team 10 times. In addition, he guided the Lakers to eight visits to the NBA Finals, but no championship.
One of the greatest players of all time and among the best to ever don a Lakers uniform was Kobe Bryant. Although the Charlotte Hornets selected him 13th overall in the 1996 draft out of Lower Merion High School, he was dealt to the Lakers on draft night for Vlade Divac. He played for the Lakers for the whole of his 20-year career, where he was an 18-time All-Star, a member of the All-NBA First Team eleven times, a member of the All-Defensive First Team nine times, the MVP in 2008, and twice the Finals MVP. In addition, as a member of two dynasties alongside Shaquille O'Neal and Pau Gasol, he assisted the Lakers in winning five NBA titles in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2009, and 2010 for the Lakers.
Magic Johnson is one of the finest players to ever don a Lakers uniform and is regarded as the best point guard of all time. Out of Michigan State, where he had won a national title and the Final Four Most Outstanding Player award as a sophomore, he was selected first overall in the 1979 draft. He played for the Lakers for the entirety of his 13-year career, during which he was a 12-time All-Star, a member of the All-NBA First Team nine times, the MVP three times, and the Finals MVP three times. As a member of the Showtime period with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and James Worthy, he also contributed to the Lakers winning five NBA titles in 1980, 1982, 1985, 1987, and 1988.
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