Lakers' best-, worst-case scenarios

In the early going, we've seen both extremes, but which way will L.A. go?

Updated: November 1, 2013, 1:05 PM ET
By Kevin Pelton | ESPN Insider

Pau Gasol and Kobe BryantAndrew D. Bernstein/NBAE/Getty ImagesIf Pau Gasol and Kobe Bryant can't get healthy, it'll be a long season for the Lakers.

The high of an upset over a rival. The low of a humiliating road blowout. And that was just the Los Angeles Lakers' first two games. While the most likely outcome for the Lakers this season is a win total in the 30s that would put both the playoffs and a high lottery pick out of reach, their opening win over the Clippers on Tuesday and a 31-point road loss 24 hours later to the Golden State Warriors showcased two very different possible outcomes for this season. Before the Lakers host the San Antonio Spurs tonight on ESPN, let's take a look at the divergent possibilities.

Best-case scenario


Could the Lakers make the playoffs? Despite a 33-win SCHOENE projection, they did so in 1.8 percent of simulations of the season. Cue Lloyd Christmas in "Dumb & Dumber": So you're saying there's a chance? Sure, and opening night showed what could happen if everything fell the Lakers' way this season and they exceeded their projected 33 wins to the tune of perhaps 45.


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