NBA Western Power Rankings Week 6: Clippers start rising

2 of 16

Dec 7, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant (24) acknowledges the crowd reaction to him during a video tribute played for Bryant during a break in the action against the Toronto Raptors at Air Canada Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

15th: Los Angeles Lakers (2 points)

By Jose Salviati

Record: 3-21

December record: 1-7

While the New Orleans Pelicans are not as good as everyone thought they would be and the Jazz are better than most thought they would be, the Lakers are neither a good surprise or a bad letdown. They are exactly what we thought they would be – bad. Since Kobe Bryant announced his retirement, however, the Lakers have become a must watch team.

Not since another great Laker, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, hung up his sneakers has the NBA seen a sustained going away party like this. Sure, the shots still don’t fall, the defense is non-existent and the team stinks, but hey, it’s Kobe!

The farewell tour has hit the road this month and the Lakers responded by going 1-6. Losses to the very good Atlanta Hawks, Raptors and improving Detroit Pistons were expected for this Lakers team which somehow managed to beat the Washington Wizards. The game on December 1, however, had to seem like a sure win. I mean, everyone else in the NBA was beating the Philadelphia 76ers, why not the Lakers? Well, as it turned out the 76ers finally found a team they could beat. In fact, a team they could dominate.

The struggle continues for the one proud franchise, but hey, it’s Kobe!

Next: New Orleans Pelicans