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The best and worst of Los Angeles over the past 25 years:

Overall winning percentage: .515 (10th)

Best year: 1988

OK, so the Clippers went 21-61 and the Raiders were 7-9. But the Lakers became the first repeat NBA champion since the '69 Celtics, the Dodgers shocked the A's in the World Series and the Kings acquired Wayne Gretzky that summer.

Considering the ineptitude of the Clippers, it's not surprising that L.A. has had no year where every team posted a winning record. The closest was 1991 when five of six were above .500 (including the 45-37 Clippers), but the Rams went 3-13.

Worst year: 1994

Amazingly, none of the city's six franchises reached the playoffs -- the Lakers went 33-49 and missed the postseason for the only time in the past 25 years. The Dodgers (58-56 in the strike year) and the Raiders (9-7) were barely above .500, but the Kings were 27-45-12, the Clippers were 17-65 and the Rams 4-12 in their last year in L.A.

Best moment: Sure, the Lakers have won eight NBA championships in the ESPN era, but can any single L.A. moment top Kirk Gibson's pinch-hit home run in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series off Dennis Eckersley?

We didn't think so.

Worst moment: The Lakers have won too often to pick one of their moments. We could pick the Rams and Raiders leaving town, but L.A. seems just fine without an NFL team. But that home run Jack Clark hit off Tom Niedenfuer in the '85 playoffs ... that one still stings.

Best team: 1987 Lakers

The 2000 Lakers went 67-15, but were lucky to survive Portland in the Western Conference finals. We'll take the '87 Lakers, the peak of the Showtime squads, which went 65-17 in the regular season and 15-3 in the playoffs, including a 4-2 win over Boston in the NBA Finals. Magic Johnson averaged 23.9 points, James Worthy 19.4, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar 17.5 and Byron Scott 17.0.

Worst team: 1987 Clippers

Yes, L.A., we're making you take credit for this sorry franchise. The Clips went 12-70. Michael Cage was sixth in the league in rebounding but the rest of the team featured the likes of Mike Woodson, Benoit Benjamin, Larry Drew, Darnell Valentine, Quintin Dailey and Lancaster Gordon. Ugh.

Best individual season: Orel Hershiser, 1988

How can you go against Magic Johnson and one of his three MVP seasons? When a guy goes 23-8, pitches 59 consecutive scoreless innings, wins two complete games in the World Series and carries a bunch of nobodies to the pinnacle of baseball.

  • Disagree? Discuss the best and worst Los Angeles moments and athletes at the Dodgers message board.








  • Overall city standings: 1979-2004

    City standings: Detroit

    City standings: Philadelphia