This article was originally posted on my Medium account, however upon the creation of this website, this was the obvious new home for Lakers Fanclub UK’s first post.

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(Image/Los Angeles Lakers)

For all NBA fans living in the United Kingdom, keeping up with our favourite team has its challenges. Especially when that team is based on the west coast, as it is with the Los Angeles Lakers, whose home games frequently tip-off deep into the night, usually at 3.30am. Every now and then, we are blessed with a tip-off time before midnight if a game falls on a Sunday or if the team is in-amongst an east coast road trip.

Every fan has their own story that shaped their fandom, their love for the game and in particular the dedication devoted to their favoured team. I have recently created Lakers Fanclub UK, as a place where all UK-based fans can come together and talk Lakers basketball.

For years I have been interacting with Lakers fans through my personal Twitter account (@mattyyyevans). Upon the creation of Lakers Fanclub UK, I have been in contact with a few UK-based Laker fans to gain an understanding and share their experiences of following the team.

Bryant All-Star Slam dunk
(Image/CBS Cleveland)

Martin — @MartinNorris82

  • When did you start supporting the Lakers?

I fell in love with basketball in 1994, this was the first time I played (first year of high school). I didn’t really support anyone as the coverage wasn’t great back then, but in ’97 I watched my first all-star weekend and slam dunk contest, I think it was on Channel 5. If I remember correctly Kobe ‘Bean’ Bryant through the legs 50 point dunk crowned him the slam dunk champion. I’d never seen anyone do anything like it so from that moment every brick I threw up in the playground was followed by a ‘Kobe!’ shout whilst everyone else still wanted to be like Mike.”

  • Why The Lakers?

From that, I naturally followed the Lakers and watched them every opportunity I could, wanting to see what he (Kobe) would do next. My love for the Lakers was born.”

  • What is your best memory of supporting the Lakers?

The 2010 Championship, beating the Celtics makes it that bit more special than the rest I have witnessed. That and Kobe’s final game, I still have it saved on my Virgin box!”

  • Describe The Lakers in one word?

Dynasty!”

  • What are your expectations for the team this season, and beyond?

I’d be happy to make the Western Conference semis as we are still growing. I think next year and the year after, we should be looking at banner number 17.”

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(Image/ESPN.com)

Jamie — @_TheJMan81

  • When did you start supporting the Lakers? Why The Lakers?

I started supporting the Lakers in the mid-80s. From memory (bit hazy now!!) there was an NBA highlights show on BBC on a Saturday night. I can’t remember if it was on all season or just for the finals but my first memory is watching the Lakers v Celtics in a finals series. We had basketball nets up at my school in the front yard, so me and my mates decided we preferred the Lakers because of Magic and Showtime, we were always them when playing in the yard. I was always Magic!!!”

  • What is your best memory of supporting the Lakers?

The 2010 finals, beating the Celtics as it was covered on a channel over here in the UK. I was in Poland at the time but got the game seven result online and couldn’t wait to get home and watch it!!”

  • Describe The Lakers in one word?

Greatest. As I think we are the greatest franchise in world sport. That, or Showtime!”

  • What are your expectations for the team this season, and beyond?

Making the play-offs would be good, any wins in the play-offs would be great. We need the young core to improve though as they seem to have stagnated a bit this year so far. Going forward, hopefully we can win another championship while LeBron is here. If we have the right pieces in the next year or 2, we have a great chance I think. Whilst I am desperate to win another title, I am more desperate to visit LA to see LeBron in a Lakers uniform! I really want the Lakers to come over for the London game also.”

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(Image/NBA.com)

Russell — @keddie_russell

  • When did you start supporting the Lakers?

I started following the Lakers in 1997.”

  • Why The Lakers?

They were the first team I saw on TV. They are a big difference to my baseball team as I love the Giants who hate the Dodgers, lol.”

  • Describe The Lakers in one word?

Epic.”

  • What are your expectations for the team this season, and beyond?

Hopefully we can make the play-offs and keep improving. Ingram and Kuz need to continue to improve and get better. Then hopefully we can land Kevin Durant next summer.”

NBA: June 17: NBA Finals: Game 7:  Celtics at Lakers
(Image/Amino Apps)

Matt  — @mattyyyevans

  • When did you start supporting the Lakers? Why The Lakers?

I started supporting the Lakers during the 2010 season. I used to play NBA 2k on Playstation and picked the Lakers all the time as they were the best team (I was young ok!). NBA 2k grew my knowledge of the rules and how the game is played. From there I started watching games and witnessed us beat the Celtics to win the championship. What a first season supporting the team! I have stuck with them ever since.”

  • What is your best memory of supporting the Lakers?

My best memory has to be travelling to the TD Garden in Boston, for my first-ever live Lakers game. This was during the 2014/15 season so the team was terrible and we were blown out by our fierce rivals. However I loved every moment sat in the nosebleed seats with my Lakers jersey on, getting the chance to see Kobe Bryant play! Something I’d only dreamt of doing. I’d love to go out to LA for a game at Staples, that will be on the horizon soon!”

  • Describe The Lakers in one word?

Golden. This is a winning franchise, the history of the team reflects that. The amount of championships won, reflects that. Hopefully it is not too long until we get another championship banner.”

  • What are your expectations for the team this season, and beyond?

I would say making the play-offs and winning a series would be enough for me this season. That will place us in a good situation going into free agency where hopefully we can land another star. During LeBron’s time in LA, it would be great to add another championship!”


Lakers Fanclub UK is predominantly on Twitter, where you can follow us here. Thanks to Martin, Jamie and Russell for taking part, give them a follow on Twitter.

If you wish to contribute or be involved in any way, feel free to send the Twitter page a DM and I’m sure we can sort something out.

By Matt Evans (@mattyyyevans)