Lessons and trends the Orlando Magic must learn from the NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers

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LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers, Orlando Magic
LeBron James was able to keep the Los Angeles Lakers in the lead and hold off the Orlando Magic. (Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Lesson 1: Star Power

There is no getting around it. To win in the NBA, a team needs star players. The best players in league history are measured by their championships for a reason. And it is not a chicken or an egg problem.

The best teams have the best players and top-end talent is king.

The Los Angeles Lakers went from outside of the playoffs to NBA champions because LeBron James was healthy and they went out and acquired Anthony Davis. The Miami Heat went from out of the Playoffs to the Finals because they acquired Jimmy Butler in a sign-and-trade during the offseason and Bam Adebayo developed into an All-Star player.

The best players in the league win. And every team needs a clear star that can push them further in the playoffs.

If there is one thing keeping the Orlando Magic from seriously discussing winning at a higher level it is the lack of top-end talent.

Nikola Vucevic was an All-Star in 2019 and eventually returned to his All-Star level by the end of the 2020 season. His playoff performance was certainly star-worthy.

Los Angeles Lakers
Los Angeles Lakers /

Los Angeles Lakers

But it is clear that even at Vucevic’s best, he is not a superstar who can change the team’s fortunes. He is not a primary option, not in a playoff series. Not if the team wants to get out of the first round.

It is hard to find another player with star potential on the roster.

Aaron Gordon has seemingly been knocking on the door of his star potential for three seasons. But he has failed to take that next leap to consistency.

Jonathan Isaac certainly has the elite defensive capability. But it is still uncertain how far his offensive game can go or how aggressive he will be as a scoring option. And he is out for the 2021 season recovering from a torn ACL.

Undoubtedly, the next big move the Magic have to make is to find a starring player to tie this whole roster together. That is the biggest piece this team is missing. It is hard to say what kind of star the team could or should target or who they could acquire.

The team is essentially waiting for its opportunity. Whether that comes from the Draft and finding a player who slips to them or going up and grabbing a player they believe has star written all over them or in a trade for a player looking for a new home, the Magic have to be on the lookout to fill this need.

Until then, the Magic are simply biding their time.