As the Lakers look to get a victory in Boston on Friday, we’re going to take a moment to reflect one of the premiere Lakers-Celtics games in this storied rivalry’s history: Game 7 of the 2010 NBA Finals.
After winning the NBA title in 2009, the Lakers looked to become the first team to repeat as champions since the Lakers of the early 2000s with Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal. Like the Shaq-Kobe Lakers, this group had grown to become one of the dominant teams in the league under the amazing leadership of Phil Jackson. Jackson had turned Kobe Bryant into a better leader and helped players such as Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom utilize their maximum potential in his renowned triangle offense.
Coming into the 2009-2010 season, Jackson knew that if the Lakers were going to repeat as champions, they would need to get tougher and more physical. When Trevor Ariza (a key contributor in the 2009 title run) left Los Angeles to pursue more money, the Lakers found a player that would certainly be the difference maker en route to their pursuit of a championship: Ron Artest.
The addition of Ron Artest made it apparent to many that the Lakers had gotten even better than last year and were a strong favorite to win back-to-back championships.
The toughest challenge for the Lakers in their 2010 playoff run would come against the Boston Celtics. The two teams battled through a grueling series that would be decided by a Game 7 at Staples Center. With legacies on the line and history at stake, this matchup looked to be one of the greatest games in NBA history and it was.
Check out the highlights from Game 7 of the 2010 NBA Finals:
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