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Lakers Approaching 30 Wins At Halfway Point

The Los Angeles Lakers followed up their historic blowout win over Cleveland Tuesday night with a hard-fought comeback road win on Wednesday night in Golden State, and return home winners of six straight and eight out of nine games. They host the 10-win New Jersey Nets on Friday night, in what will be the 41st game of the season for the Lakers. As the halfway point approaches, the Lakers have an excellent chance to get a milestone win.

Sixty wins has always been the hallmark for great teams in the NBA. At 29-11, the Lakers with a win on Friday will get halfway there at the exact halfway point of the season. The NBA switched to an 82-game season in the 1967-1968 season. In the 43 seasons since, the Lakers have won at least 30 games 13 times. Here is how those teams have fared:

Best First Halves In Lakers History
Year 1st Half Season Playoffs
1971-72 38-3 69-13 NBA Champs
2008-09 33-8 65-17 NBA Champs
1999-00 33-8 67-15 NBA Champs
1987-88 33-8 62-20 NBA Champs
2009-10 32-9 57-25 NBA Champs
1986-87 32-9 65-17 NBA Champs
1985-86 32-9 62-20 lost Conf Finals
1982-83 32-9 58-24 lost NBA Finals
1997-98 31-10 61-21 lost Conf Finals
1989-90 31-10 63-19 lost 2nd round
1972-73 31-10 60-22 lost NBA Finals
1990-91 30-11 58-24 lost NBA Finals
1981-82 30-11 57-25 NBA Champs

That's a pretty good track record; in 10 of the 13 seasons, the Lakers have advanced to the NBA Finals, winning seven titles. While starting 30-11 is by no means a guarantee of future success, it's a good start.

For more Lakers news and analysis, be sure to read Silver Screen and Roll.