Lakers’ Ownership Sees Surprising Changes After Disappointing Playoff Exit

Published 06/26/2021, 6:49 AM EDT
Jun 1, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James reacts against the Phoenix Suns in the second half during game five in the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Phoenix Suns Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports


The Los Angeles Lakers were one of the favorites to win the title this season. After retaining key players from last season’s championship run, the Lakers retooled their roster with younger players.

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Given how Frank Vogel and Co. started off their season, the Purple and Gold looked in prime position to repeat this season. But injuries plagued the champions midway through the season. While LeBron James and Anthony Davis returned to the lineup during the playoffs, the Lakers did not have enough left on their tank and succumbed to a first round exit against the Phoenix Suns.

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Defending champions see shocking ownership change

A first round exit was certainly not the result the Lakers faithful expected. Given that they have two perennial superstars in LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the Purple and Gold were supposed to be in for a Finals run.

While injuries did have a major effect on the same, the Lakers’ minority ownership might not be satisfied with their team’s performance this season. Recently minority owners AEG Worldwide sold their stake to an anonymous buyer. Owner Phillip Auschwitz of AEG owned 27% of the Lakers organization which accounted for a whopping total $1.35 billion.

This certainly is a pretty shocking turn of events and might suggest that some minority owners might be losing trust on the roster. While the Buss family continue to own majority share, a first round exit hasn’t helped the organisation’s cause.

This certainly increases pressure on executive Rob Pelinka who has to retool the roster yet again and prepare the Lakers to run it back next season.

Can the Lakers win challenge for the title in the 2021-22 season?

The Lakers certainly are one of the most talented teams in the league. With arguably the best player in the world by their side in LeBron James and a superstar in Anthony Davis, the Purple and Gold are primed to succeed in the NBA.

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But recently the competition has drastically increased. With the Brooklyn Nets forming a big three of Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and James Harden and teams like the Phoenix Suns and the LA Clippers making strides in the West, the Lakers are facing massive competition.

May 25, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) celebrates with teammates against the Phoenix Suns during the first half in game two of the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Phoenix Suns Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

While the Lakers roster looked good on paper, they did not gel at all last season. This led to a team solely dependent on the talents of Bron and AD and a team lacking any cohesiveness.

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With a bunch of free agents, Rob Pelinka might have his hands full. Can the Lakers build a championship roster and run it back next season?

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Aditya Mohapatra

1023 articles

Aditya Mohapatra is a sports enthusiast who primarily covers the NBA for EssentiallySports. Having graduated in Mass Communication, he has prior experience in writing for ABP News, and has been writing for EssentiallySports since November 2020. This die-hard Los Angeles Lakers fan feels that LeBron James is the best thing to have ever happened to the NBA, and will hold a healthy debate with anyone suggesting otherwise.

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