The Los Angeles Lakers are an American professional basketball team based in Los Angeles. The Lakers compete in the National Basketball Association, as a club of the leagues Western Conference Pacific Division. The Lakers are one of the most successful teams in the history of the NBA, as of 2015, the Lakers are the second most valuable franchise in the NBA according to Forbes, having an estimated value of $2.7 billion. The franchise began with the 1947 purchase of a disbanded team, the new team began playing in Minneapolis, calling themselves the Minneapolis Lakers in honor of the states nickname, Land of 10,000 Lakes. The team was propelled by center George Mikan, who is described by the NBAs official website as the leagues first superstar, after struggling financially in the late 1950s following Mikans retirement, they relocated to Los Angeles before the 1960–61 season. Led by Hall of Famers Elgin Baylor and Jerry West, Los Angeles made the NBA Finals six times in the 1960s, but lost each series to the Boston Celtics, beginning their long and storied rivalry. After the retirement of West and Chamberlain, the team acquired another center, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who had won multiple MVP awards and this team featured Hall of Famers in Johnson, Abdul-Jabbar, and James Worthy, and a Hall of Fame coach, Pat Riley. After Abdul-Jabbar and Johnsons retirement, the team struggled in the early 1990s before acquiring Shaquille ONeal, led by ONeal, Bryant, and another Hall of Fame coach, Phil Jackson, Los Angeles won three consecutive titles between 2000 to 2002, securing the franchise its second three-peat. After losing both the 2004 and 2008 NBA Finals, the Lakers won two championships by defeating the Orlando Magic in 2009 and Boston in 2010. The Lakers hold the record for NBAs longest winning streak,33 straight games,21 Hall of Famers have played for Los Angeles, while four have coached the team. Four Lakers—Abdul-Jabbar, Johnson, ONeal, and Bryant—have won the NBA MVP Award for a total of eight awards, Minneapolis sportswriter Sid Hartman played a key behind the scenes role in helping put together the deal and later the team. Inspired by Minnesotas nickname, Land of 10,000 Lakes, Hartman helped them hire John Kundla from College of St. Thomas, to be their first head coach, by meeting with him and selling him on the team. The Lakers had a roster which featured forward Jim Pollard, playmaker Herm Schaefer, and center George Mikan. In their first season, they led the league with a 43–17 record, in 1948, the Lakers moved from the NBL to the Basketball Association of America, and Mikans 28.3 point per game scoring average set a BAA record. In the 1949 BAA Finals they won the championship, beating the Washington Capitols four games to two, the following season, the team improved to 51–17, repeating as champions. In the 1950–51 season, Mikan won his third straight scoring title at 28.4 ppg, one of those games, a 19–18 loss against the Fort Wayne Pistons, became infamous as the lowest scoring game in NBA history. In the playoffs, they defeated the Indianapolis Olympians in three games but lost to the Rochester Royals in the next round, during the 1951–52 season, the Lakers won 40 games, finishing second in their division. They faced the New York Knicks in the NBA Finals, which won in seven games
Minneapolis team co-owner Benjamin Berger
Hall of Famer Gail Goodrich was a Laker for nine seasons in the 1960s and 1970s, and played in four NBA Finals.