The Los Angeles Lakers have won 16 championships during their franchise history, which makes it all the easier to forget the top players to never reach the mountaintop.
Let’s be honest — the Los Angeles Lakers are one of the greatest franchises in the history of sports. Not only are they one of the most successful both in terms of wins and rings, but they’ve seen some of the top athletes of all time take part in the Lake Show.
Yes, I’m talking about guys like Kobe Bryant, Magic Johnson, Shaquille O’Neal, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Jerry West. Some of the most iconic names in sports (not just basketball) have worn the purple and gold, and won rings along the way.
That’s all good and dandy. However, at this moment I’d like to focus on the folks who finished their NBA careers without any jewelry.
Believe it or not, some of the greatest names the sport has ever seen have played for the Lakers while failing to win a championship. Then again, it makes sense when you consider that, despite the franchise’s 16 banners, they’ve been to the Finals a total of 31 times. Doing simple math, that tells us that they’ve lost 15 times.
As you can imagine, falling just short still takes plenty of talent. And while some of the legends previously mentioned were on those teams, there were other noteworthy players who failed to land a title — either with the Lakers or another club.
Whatever the situation may be, these are the greatest Lakers players to never taste Finals victory.