Los Angeles Lakers 2013Dear Lakers Nation,

Even though I know yesterday was somewhat disappointing, I'm writing this letter to you, to let you know, we should all have our heads held HIGH.

To start off, I'd like to remind you guys what happened with Dwight Howard this season. We were not a top-seeded team, we did not dominate the conference, we were not title-contenders, we didn't win the battle for Los Angeles, we listened to constant whining from Dwight and Dwight's father over Mike D'Antoni and we watched over and over Dwight stand at the free throw line praying while he still misses them.

Here's the facts.

Kobe Bryant carried the team offensively, the Lakers were battling for a playoff spot up until the end of the season, we wound up getting the seventh seed (funny who was 8th again? Oh yeah, that would be the Houston Rockets) and letting the Clippers hang their first banner in Staples Center, a division title.

Now, here's the worst part about it.

When Kobe Bryant went down with an injury at the end of the season, it was Dwight's time to step up big time in the series against the San Antonio Spurs, yet what happened? We were swept easily and just humiliated by San Antonio, as we exited in the first round.

So why are we so down? Because we lost a guy that gave us nothing to even really be excited for anyways? We didn't flourish with Dwight, and I'll be glad to see how well he does in Houston.

Listen up Lakers fans.

You do realize that we still have Kobe Bryant on this team right? You do realize that we have a center who actually came through and delivered us two championships in Pau Gasol correct? And you do know that we have one of the greatest point guards of all-time in Steve Nash? I'm sure these three will lose no sleep because of Dwight Howard leaving. Might I add, we have the best general manager in basketball in Mitch Kupchak, I'm sure he has a plan B.

I would also like to bring up another point, let me explain something else here. There seems to be another old team, who plays pick-and-roll basketball, who might have just happened to make it out of the West this season and took the Miami Heat to Game 7 of the NBA Finals this year.

Let's compare.

The Spurs have Tim Duncan, a lengthy veteran big man who can shoot from mid range, and who has an excellent post game. Sounds a lot like Gasol, doesn't it?

The Spurs have a great ball-handling point guard in Tony Parker, who can stretch the floor with his shooting, hit running jump shots, is a great passer and who is a great pick-and-roll point guard. Now I'm not saying there the same skill level, but it sounds a lot like Steve Nash to me.

Last but not least, the Spurs have a shooting guard in Manu Ginobili who can fill the role of a point guard from time to time, hit long-range jump shots and handle the ball well. Kobe Bryant can do this and much much much more.

I could also continue to compare Tiago Splitter to Jordan Hill and Metta World Peace to Kawhi Leonard, but that's not the point. The point is to show the similarities between the currently constructed Laker squad and the team that won the West this season. Also I want you to realize that if the Spurs 3 of Ginobili, Paker and Duncan is considered a bBg 3, then so too is Pau Gasol, Steve Nash and Kobe Bryant.

Listen Lakers Nation, I would like you guys to know, that I promise you, Dwight Coward will NEVER win a championship in Houston. And I guarantee that the Lakers will win No. 17 before the Rockets win one. T

he coward and the beard can play around in Houston all they want, but they still won't contend for a title now that the Dwightmare is into the picture, because I can tell you, if the Lakers weren't contending with Kobe, Nash and Pau around Dwight Coward, then a core of James Harden, Jeremy Lin, Omer Asik or Josh Smith or Ryan Anderson or whoever else is rumored to go there certainly won't contend for a title either.

I promise you, Lakers Nation, that this season we will finish better than the seventh seed that we finished in last year with the Dwightmare. And I promise you, we may look down but we are CERTAINLY not out.

WE ARE THE LOS ANGELES LAKERS, we don't need superwoman for us to contend, and as long as Kobe Bryant is stepping onto that floor, no player, no team, nobody worries me. And as long as that purple and gold swagger and Lakers Nation stays intact, then I and all of the rest of LakerNation should have no worries.

So I end it with this Lakers Nation: this is FAR from the end, it's a new beginning.

It's "the last chapter" of the Kobe Bryant era, and we are far from out of contention, because I tell you as long as it says the word Lakers on the front of our jerseys, we will be contenders for a world championship. Kobe Bryant is not done, and we as a team are not done. It's time to take back what's ours, and I can't wait till we finish ahead of Houston in the standings next season.

It may seem like a dark day to the outsiders, but inside Lakers Nation, it's the start of a new day and a new era. Dwight Coward may be gone, but the Black Mamba is still here, ready to capture his prey. So let this day be a bright day in LALA land.

Remember my promise: we will win our 17th before Dwight Coward wins his first.


GO LAKERS. #CountOnTheVino. See ya on October 31.



John Miceli
Lakers Fan


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