Record: 67-15, first place in Pacific Division
The Lakers hired Phil Jackson as coach before the season and moved into Staples Center. Jackson installed the "triangle offense", which brough him six NBA titles at Chicago.
The Lakers started the season 25-5 and cruised to the playoffs, becoming the first team in NBA history to have three different double-figure winning streaks in the same season.
Playoffs: After struggling to get past Sacramento in the first round, the Lakers defeated the Phoenix Suns in five games in the Western Conference semifinals, setting up a conference finals matchup against Portland. Portland won Games 5 and 6 to force a decisive seventh game, which featured one of the greatest comebacks in Lakers history,
Down by 13 points entering the fourth quarter, the Lakers staged an improbable rally capped by an incredible alley-oop from Kobe Bryant to Shaquille O'Neal as the Staples Center crowd erupted at a volume rarely heard at a sporting event. The Lakers then defeated the Larry Bird-coached Indiana Pacers in the NBA Finals to win their first NBA title since 1988.
O'Neal was named MVP of the Finals to become only the third player to be named Most Valuable Player of the regular season, All-Star Game and the NBA Finals.