The 2012-13 Los Angeles Lakers were one of the most disappointing teams in not just Lakers history, but NBA history as well. The Lakers acquired a still healthy Steve Nash in a fourth of July firework of a sign and trade, and followed up that move by acquiring disgruntled center Dwight Howard from the Orlando Magic to add to a core of Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol that had just won an NBA title two years before. The team was projected to be a historically dominant team, and things were supposed to be fun.
Pretty much the opposite of fun was what happened. Howard was never fully healthy, Steve Nash only lasted two games before breaking his leg, Mike Brown was fired five games in, and Kobe Bryant was lost for the rest of the year after tearing his Achilles tendon late in the season while the Lakers pushed for the playoffs.
With Bryant and Howard facing off once again on Saturday night, fellow 2012-13 Laker Metta World Peace was asked what he thought was the downfall of that much-hyped outfit, and he did not list any of the reasons above:
On Lakers' 2012-13 season, Metta cast more blame on Mike D'Antoni's system than Kobe/Dwight personality clashes.— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) December 13, 2015
Bryant put up one of the most impressive and efficient seasons of his career (27.3 points, 6 assists, and 5.7 rebounds) under D'Antoni before being lost for the season with the injury that basically ended his career as an effective player as well. But while D'Antoni's preferred fast pace attack was a good fit for Bryant and Nash, it was a poor one for the post-up preferring duo of Gasol and Howard, who chafed at that style of play before it was later mostly abandoned.
That Lakers team had inumerable issues, and it is interesting to hear an on the record opinion on what went so wrong from someone involved with it.