Of the 14 NBA teams outside playoff position entering the All-Star break, four reached the postseason last year. But only one of those four held anything better than a 7-seed. Only one added two superstars, one in his prime and one still excelling. And only one entered the season with most observers predicting success -- division title at the least, NBA title at the best.
Yes, that would be the Los Angeles Lakers.
And yes, it's safe to say things have gone awry.
Not that it's over for the Lake Show -- sitting in 10th in the Western Conference, 3½ games out of the playoffs with 28 to go. They also still feature Kobe Bryant, Dwight Howard, Pau Gasol and Steve Nash -- even if each player's skills might be a tad (or quite) diminished.
No matter what happens, though, it's been a tumultuous season for the NBA's signature West Coast franchise.