Can You Beat LA? Create the Best Lineup to Beat the All-Time Lakers

When you think about the best all-time basketball team, the Los Angeles Lakers immediately come to mind. You have the likes of Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O’Neal, Magic Johnson, LeBron James and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Who can compete with a starting lineup of those elite athletes?

No one team, that’s your answer. I would say the closest would be either Chicago or Golden State, with lineups of Derrick Rose, Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Dennis Rodman and Artis Gilmore for the Bulls and Stephen Curry, Chris Mullin, Rick Barry, Nate Thurmond, and Wilt Chamberlain for the Warriors.

I think we can agree that the Lakers still take the cake by a fairly wide margin in each of those matchups, so let’s take a different approach. What if we did the lineup of Lakers (Magic, Kobe, LeBron, Kareem, Shaq, and the sixth man of Jerry West) against an all-time Eastern Conference team? Is there a team that can beat this Laker unit?

Los Angeles Lakers All-Time Team

PG: Magic Johnson

SG: Kobe Bryant

SF: LeBron James

PF: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

C: Shaquille O’Neal

6th Man: Jerry West

I chose this team based on overall versatility and where needs would be aligned. For example, I left Wilt Chamberlain off because the team already has two other centers. Obviously, you can change it to fit your liking/preference. This is just my take on the best Laker team.

My Lineup

What team would MOST LIKELY be able to beat this all-time Laker team? (I will not be using duplicate players in this listing, so I can’t pull LeBron from the East to match up with LeBron on the Lakers) Here is my team:

PG: Scottie Pippen (Chicago Bulls)

scottie 1

Scottie is the original “point-forward.” A defensive-minded player that revolutionized the position. I toyed with other point-forwards but Scottie is still the best. A great rebounder and gifted passer at the point guard position that can lockdown and contain a bigger guard.

SG: Michael Jordan (Chicago Bulls)

mj 1

Is there any other question for this position? Do I need to explain it? 9-time defensive first team and a Defensive Player of the Year on his mirror in Kobe. The battle everybody wanted to see. Capable of taking the game into his own hands if need be (or if it’s not).

SF: Larry Bird (Boston Celtics)


Larry Legend is the perfect player to use with this group. A spot-up shooter that will take and make shots. An underrated defensive asset and a more than capable playmaker. A player that will play gritty and make things happen for the team.

PF: Wilt Chamberlain (Philadelphia 76ers)


Wilt The Stilt was a monster for Philadelphia. In his best season, he averaged 34 points and 25 rebounds a game. A player that won’t back down from a matchup of Kareem and will hold his own offensively as well.

C: Dikembe Mutombo (Atlanta Hawks)


I chose Mutombo exclusively to keep Shaq out of the paint and off the glass. He won’t put up any offensive numbers, but I don’t need him to. I need him to be a big man and move Shaq. I know it’s impossible to stop The Big Diesel when locked in, but the 4x DPOY will hold his own in the strength matchup.

6th Man: Dwyane Wade (Miami Heat)

Dwyane Wade

My pick for Wade was easy. A versatile 1-2 guard that can lock down defensively and get a bucket on the breakaway. My favorite player because of his grit and determination and his unwillingness to take a play off.

Brandon Baker’s Lineup (@panamaniac03)

PG: Oscar Robertson

SG: Michael Jordan

SF: Larry Bird

PF: Bill Russell

C: Wilt Chamberlain

6th Man: Allen Iverson

John Justis’ Lineup (@justis15)

PG: Scottie Pippen

SG: Michael Jordan

SF: Larry Bird

PF: Charles Barkley

C: Bill Russell

6th Man: Dwyane Wade

Cole Raines’ Lineup (@craines38)

PG: Ben Simmons

SG: Michael Jordan

SF: Kevin Durant

PF: Dennis Rodman

C: Bill Russell

6th Man: Scottie Pippen

Who Cracks Your Starting 5?

Who are you taking out of the East to beat the Lakers all-time starting 5? Let us know @pzer0music or @oth_basketball who can take them on!

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