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The Los Angeles Lakers’ disastrous season is officially over after a blowout loss to the Phoenix Suns

The Lakers' performance this season was by far the worst by any contender in NBA history
Los Angeles Lakers injured forward LeBron James watches from the bench

LeBron James

The Lakers' play-in hopes were crushed by the Pheonix Suns (121-110) as their season officially ended on Tuesday. Thanks to the San Antonio Spurs' surprising victory over the Denver Nuggets on the same day, the Lakers can no longer qualify for the play-in tournament, which means their off-season will begin just about a week from now.

"Extremely disappointed. Disappointed for our fanbase. Disappointed for the Buss family," Frank Vogel, who might be days away from being fired, said. "It's not been due to a lack of effort. We just fell short through a disjointed season. We're all disappointed," Vogel added.

The Lakers (31-48) had their eight-worst season in franchise history in terms of winning percentage. This season's team is just four wins better than the 2013-2014 squad that featured Nick Young as the leading scorer. Their 48-loss season is also the most by any LeBron James-led team in his career.

"This is a season we just didn't get it done. We had the tools. We can't make any excuses about it. We just didn't get it done," Camelo Anthony said.

"It's obviously disappointing on many levels but nothing you can do about it at this point," Russell Westbrook, who played 77 out of 79 games this season, said.

The Lakers are now the sixth team since 2008 to miss the playoffs two years after winning a championship. They join the 2008 Miami Heat, 2011 Dallas Mavericks, 2015 Heat, 2020 Golden State Warriors, and 2021 Raptors in that club.

What seemed to be a powerful defensive-minded team that won the championship less than two years ago has officially crumbled down and is nowhere to be found.

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What's next for the Lakers?

After winning the championship less than two years ago, the Lakers have to go back to the drawing board and figure out how to bounce back from one of their worst seasons in franchise history -- trading what's left in their assets away or simply running it back?

For Anthony Davis, who put up an admirable effort on Tuesday despite playing with a bum foot, it's about learning from their mistakes. The Brow mentioned that he wishes the team was healthy enough to reach their potential this season. Davis acknowledged that he was a huge reason the Lakers couldn't get to their peak this season.

"We gotta recap this season, see what worked and what didn't work, and go from there," Davis said. "Our goal was to win a championship, we had the pieces but injuries got in the way of that. That was the difference in our season." Davis added.

When asked if he plans to don the Purple and Gold again next season, Westbrook believes there's a huge possibility. The Los Angeles native is still bullish on the idea that the team would've performed better if all their superstars played a complete season together.

"I mean, that's the plan. But nothing is promised. Yes, we want to be able to see what that looks like, what that entails over the course of an 82-game season," Westbrook said.

Is this the worst season in Lakers' history?

Considering the expectations and aspirations of this year's Lakers team, this is arguably their worst season yet. It's important to note that this team had the fifth easiest schedule before the All-Star break and still garnered a 27-31 record, which ranked them 19th in the league. After the All-Star break, they were tested with the third toughest schedule and crashed with a 4-17 record.

So yes, while it's valid to point out how unhealthy they were all year, it is still fair to say that they did not meet expectations. In fact, their disappointing performance is by far one of the worst by any contender in NBA history.

At least the good news for Lakers fans is that they no longer have to suffer from watching this team. However, the bad news for them is that they're going to be the laughing stock of the whole NBA — something they've already been accustomed to all season.

The Lakers will hope to turn things around as they start to build another contending team in a few weeks. 

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