When Jerry Buss purchased the Lakers in 1979, he had a goal in mind, which was to surpass the Boston Celtics in championships. It may not seem far-fetched to the modern NBA fan, but when Buss had taken over the team, they had won 6 championships as compared to 13 for the Celtics.
Things of course changed from the 1980s as the Showtime Lakers won 5 championships in the decade and when the Lakers led by Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant three-peated from 2000 to 2002, that large divide was gone. The Celtics, for their part, won 3 more titles in that time and added another in 2008, but the Lakers would be crowned champions in 2009 as well as 2010, which meant they were just one behind the Celtics.
That one title would elude them for a decade and it was only in 2020 that LeBron James and Anthony Davis secured title No. 17 for LA, to match the Celtics. Jerry Buss was no longer alive to witness that great moment, as he passed away in 2013, but his daughter carries on with that goal of his in mind. During an interview with Yahoo Sports, Jeanie Buss spoke about that and how the work isn't done yet.
via Yahoo Sports:
“When he started, he wanted to take on the Boston Celtics and all the winning they had done,” Buss told Yahoo Sports. “Now, with ring No. 17, we’re tied with the Celtics in terms of winning [championships]. That’s what he set out to do. And certainly the work is not done yet. We have to continue that quest, and we’ll do so.”
Jeanie has had her detractors for the way she has operated during her time in charge and the only way to silence them is to go and win that 18th title. The key to accomplishing that would be ensuring that LeBron stays with the team after this season.
All signs are pointing toward James signing an extension with the team, despite all their recent struggles in surrounding him with a good supporting cast. The top brass which includes Jeanie, of course, needs to get their act together if they are to finally surpass the Celtics.