There are 16 teams in the NBA playoffs. 15 of them will not win the championship. This means over 90% of little kids who are fans will cry. Even if your team does win it all... I will tell you something out of personal experience: the happiness of winning a championship does not stay in your memory as long as a losing a championship. Losing in 2004 to Detroit still burns me to this day.
Granted, I am lucky to be a Lakers fan. The Lakers win the championship quite often. But I have great empathy for Knicks fans of the 90s, Kings fans of the early 2000s, or Suns fans of today. Their teams are good but not good enough. It sucks to lose every year after you've gone far in the playoffs. It would be alot less heartbreaking to be a Clippers fan for sure because "Happiness = Results - Expecations" You only get hurt if you end up with alot of expectation.
I feel that I've grown a little bit when it comes to pro sports. I can honestly say I don't mind if the Lakers don't win the championship this year. There are many teams that I would be really happy to see win it. If not the Lakers this year, I want Phoenix to win it, then Utah 2nd, then Boston 3rd. All those three have the same description: underdogs with old veterans who can deny all the nay-sayers.
Can the Lakers win it all this year? Maybe. They have a good shot.
However these are the teams that I feel will beat the Lakers: Portland, Denver, Cleveland, and Boston. Luckily for Lakers fans, those teams also have other teams that will beat them.
This is what I love about the NBA playoffs, its all about matchups. It's like rock-paper-scissors. Orlando can easily beat Cleveland and Boston, but I'm sure the Lakers can beat Orlando. Also, Utah can beat Denver, but the Lakers will own Utah.
I just hope the Lakers get the best path possible:
1st round: OKC Thunder (yay we got them!)
2nd round: Utah Jazz
3rd round: Phoenix Suns
Finals: Orlando Magic
We are about to ball, salute you!