Two years later he is in the middle of an NBA Finals series.
On Feb 21, 2017, general manager Mitch Kupchak was sacked while Lakers legend Magic Johnson was named as president of basketball operations.
The Lakers' mission at that point could not have been more simple: Get a basket, win a title.
"We just played hard, got to where we wanted to on offense, shared the ball like we always do, and just kept with it", he said. It means a lot to us.
They made the clincher look easy.
More importantly, the championship cemented his legacy with the Lakers as an all-time franchise great.
Led by LeBron James, who had his 28th career triple-double in National Basketball Association playoff history and now trails just Magic Johnson for the all-time lead by two, and with their defence on point nearly all night, the Lakers were finally able to unleash their full arsenal on the Heat.
The Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Miami Heat 106-93 on Sunday, claiming the 2020 National Basketball Association title and bringing the league's impressively successful bubble experiment at Disney World to a close. The NBA prepared for the moment by setting up confetti on each baseline.
"Decisiveness is an incredible quality to have", Vogel said.
"Duncan is Duncan. Those are the games we expect him to have", Butler said.
They delivered what Bryant did five times for LA - a ring, and the clincher was emphatic. Laker Nation wants their respect. And if they're still confident in me and still encouraged and still believe in me and believe in us, that's all that matters to me: that we can get this thing done.
McGee didn't appear in Game 6, but he has been a staple in the Lakers starting lineup all season and in the playoffs. Green took a wide-open 3-point attempt off a pass from LeBron James, but it fell well short.
And during the Lakers' celebration, Antetokounmpo was spotted holding the Greek flag.
But with James hounding Butler, the Heat star finished with just 12 points in Game 6 on five-for-10 shooting. "I've gotten so many messages, I can't even hit the delete all button. This locker room ... we're going to remember this year, this season, this experience and that locker room brotherhood for the rest of our lives".
Still, everything he did on and off the court to get the fifth-seeded Heat from the middle of the pack to the top of the Eastern Conference is what will be remembered.
"Obviously nobody likes to lose", Butler said. "We're going to learn from this".
- LeBron gets the layup to go and the Lakers lead 35-23 thanks to a 12-4 run. I'll be better coming back.
The Heat watched Danny Green's wide-open 3-pointer in the final seconds bounce off the rim on the way to winning Game 5.
Why did the Lakers lose Game 5?
Davis went down in the first quarter after a collision with Miami Heat forward Andre Iguodala.
"We have been searching for him for a long time and I think he's been searching for something like us for a while".