It's early December and the Lakers, at 9-13, are already nine games behind the top-seeded San Antonio Spurs (18-4). What would it take for the Lakers to win the Western Conference?
For starters, the Lakers need Steve Nash and Pau Gasol back in the lineup.
San Antonio has won 81.8% of its games this season, which projects to 67 wins on the year. If the Spurs continue to win at their current rate, the Lakers would have to go finish the season 58-2 to tie.
Should San Antonio win just 70% of its remaining games, winning 60 games wouldn't be enough for the Lakers, who show no signs of going 51-9.
The Oklahoma City Thunder at 17-4 are also out of the Lakers' reach, while the Memphis Grizzlies (14-4) would need to drop off significantly. The Clippers (15-6) and even Golden State Warriors (14-7) may have already locked in a better record than the Lakers.