Record: 57-25, first place in Pacific Division
The Lakers signed Ron Artest in the off-season to shore up the defense and opened the season 23-4. Kobe Bryant fought off the pain of a broken finger all season, in addition to chronically sore knees. Throw in the annual injury to Andrew Bynum (this time a strained Achilles') and the Lakers did well to come away with the best record in the Western Conference.
Playoffs: The Lakers got past a tough Oklahoma City Thunder and then swept the Utah Jazz to set up a conference finals matchup with Phoenix. With the series tied, 2-2, Artest tipped in Bryant’s last-second shot to give the Lakers a Game 5 win and help the team advance to the Finals against the Boston Celtics. In a tough, hard-fought series, the Lakers overcame a 13-point deficit in the third quarter of Game 7 to win the game and their second consecutive title.
Kobe Bryant was named NBA Finals MVP for the second straight season and Phil Jackson won his 11th title as a coach.