Lakers With the Championship Trophy

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Jayden Bradley, Writer

It was not a season. For the Los Angeles Lakers, it was an obstacle course.

It was 12 months packed with tragedies and togetherness. It was disjointed and odd, unprecedented and often unpleasant, an odyssey that began for them in a Chinese hotel amid a geopolitical feud and ended in a mostly empty arena at Walt Disney World, the site of the world’s most famous bubble since the invention of chewing gum.

But for all the disruptive forces that rocked the N.B.A., the Lakers triumphed in the end.

The Lakers won their 17th championship — and their first with LeBron James as their centerpiece — with a 106-93 victory over the Miami Heat on Sunday night in Game 6 of the N.B.A. finals. A mere 355 days after the Lakers played their season opener before a packed crowd at Staples Center in Los Angeles, they toppled the Heat, four games to two, to finish off their playoff run on an elaborate made-for-TV sound stage that lacked spectators, aside from a few of the players’ family members and friends.

But after all this, they ended up with their 17th championship and a great friendship.