In a disappointing end to a wonderful season, the Boston Celtics dominated the Lakers 131-92, to claim their 17th NBA title, and their first in 22 years.

Despite the loss, the Lakers have plenty to be proud of. A team that most figured would win 40-45 games and compete for only the 7th or 8th spot in the West, wound up winning 57 games and earned the top seed in the most-competitive Western Conference ever. In addition, Kobe Bryant shook off his offseason turmoil and had his best team-oriented season, which culminated in him winning his first Most Valuable Player award.

This season also saw the emergence of center, Andrew Bynum, who took a giant step forward averaging 13.1 points, 10.2 rebounds, and 2.06 blocks before suffering a season-ending knee injury on January 13th. The Lakers also acquired Pau Gasol from the Memphis Grizzlies in early February, which helped catapult the team back into contention in the West, after the devastating loss of Bynum.

The Lakers bench also proved to be a bright spot for the team all season, led by Sasha Vujacic, the 4th-year guard who had by far his best season averaging 8.8 points per game, and shooting .437 from the 3-point line. Second-year guard Jordan Farmar also showed great potential in his second year, raising his scoring to 9.1 points per game, more than doubling his output from 2006-07.

So while the season did end on a sour note, there is a huge upside for the Lakers and the future looks bright for another title run in 2008-09 and beyond.