After five seasons without reaching the playoffs, the Los Angeles Lakers are hoping LeBron James' arrival can finally ensure a post-season return.
The four-time MVP swapped his hometown Cleveland Cavaliers for LA in July, instantly turning the Lakers from an afterthought into contenders.
That is because the 33-year-old has been to eight successive Finals, and nine overall, as both the Cavaliers and the Miami Heat have benefitted from having James on the court.
With the help of Opta, we take a look at how teams fared in the season before LeBron arrived, and how they performed in their first campaign with him on the roster.
Cleveland Cavaliers 2002-03 and 2003-04
Few players had garnered as much pre-draft buzz as James did when he decided to forgo college and enter the NBA in 2003.
The Ohio native was taken by a Cavs team that had the first overall pick and had produced a 17-65 record the season before.
Cleveland improved to 35-47 in James' rookie campaign whereas there were marginal gains in a number of other categories at both ends of the court. They averaged 1.5 more points per game, allowed an average of 5.5 points fewer and had more assists and rebounds.
Miami Heat 2009-10 and 2010-11
James famously took his "talents to South Beach" in 2010, joining Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh to form the Big Three, which led Miami to the Finals in each of their four years together.
Miami had gone 47-35 in 2009-10 and were knocked out of the playoffs in the first round. Their record improved to 58-24 in James' first term, their points per game increased by 5.6 to a whopping 102.1 and their three-point percentage also improved by 2.4 per cent.
However, owing to Wade and Bosh's presence, James actually contributed three fewer points per game on average.
Cleveland Cavaliers 2013-14 and 2014-15
Having won two titles in Miami, James returned 'home' in 2014 and had a huge impact on a Cavs team that had not made the playoffs in his four years away.
Cleveland had 20 more wins in James' first campaign back and having allowed 101.5 points per game in 2013-14, James' arrival helped reduce that figure to 98.7 the following season.
James' average points-per-game dropped again – from 27.1 in his last season with Miami to 25.3 – yet he averaged 7.4 assists per game – up 1.1 from the previous term.
Los Angeles Lakers 2017-18 and 2018-19
A youthful Lakers team compiled a 35-47 record in 2017-18 and gave up 109.6 points per game despite accumulating an average of 108.1 points offensively.
Their field-goal percentage (46.1) was lower than James' personal figure with the Cavs last season (54.2), while LeBron also made 36.7 per cent of the three-pointers he attempted, compared to the Lakers' collective total of 34.5 per cent.
The likes of Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram and Kyle Kuzma will also be heartened by the fact James averaged 9.1 assists last season as the Lakers seek to end their five-year playoff drought.
|The O-Line bond behind two Heisman Trophies - Dru Samia & Ben Powers talk protecting Baker Mayfield|
|Elijah Holyfield set for NFL armed with fatherly advice and Georgia grounding|
|Malone urges Nuggets response to ´hungry´ White|
|Brown lauds exceptional Simmons after Sixers take series lead|
|Durant showed who he is – Kerr|
|Dodgers hold off Brewers|
|76ers win without Embiid, Warriors bounce back in big way|
|Knicks confident they will appeal to stars|
|Capitals´ Reirden heated after hit on ´defenseless´ Oshie|
|Brady, Edelman react to Gronkowski denting the Lombardi Trophy|
|Embiid to miss 76ers´ game three against Nets|
|This Week in US Sports: Lightning handed historic loss, Red Sox massively hungover|
|NFL Draft 2019: Should Cardinals take Murray or stick with Rosen?|
|Giants GM Dave Gettleman shuts down Josh Rosen trade talk|
|The NFL is a business - Josh Rosen has no complaints about Cardinals trade rumours|
|Tiger Woods´ Masters win hailed as ´greatest comeback´ by Michael Jordan|
|Irving: There´s ´nothing like´ delivering for the Celtics in the playoffs|
|We´re almost there - Harden sees Rockets peaking in playoffs|
|Giannis has faith in Budenholzer to keep him fresh|
|Braves, Red Sox bullpens both lose as Kimbrel sits at home|
|Zion Williamson assists couple with epic gender reveal dunk|
|Russell Wilson wants to be a ´Seahawk for life´|
|Celtics rally for win over Pacers, Bucks pull away from Pistons|
|2019 NFL schedule: Five must-see prime-time games|
|Here´s how Gronkowski dented the Lombardi Trophy|
|2019 NFL schedule: Five dates to circle on your calendar|
|2019 NFL schedule: Five potholes on Patriots´ road to repeat|
|2019 NFL schedule: Five takeaways from fixture release|
|Simmons ´average´ in half-court offense, says Dudley|
|Durant needs to be more aggressive in playoffs - Kerr|
|New Pelicans chief Griffin confident Davis will stay|
|Mack to face Raiders at Tottenham after NFL reveal 2019 international schedule|
|Kittle backs ´outrageous´ Fant & ´Mr Do it All´ Hockenson to have day-one impact|
|Malone proud of ´phenomenal´ Murray|
|We´ll be alright - Westbrook not pushing the panic button|
|A series doesn´t start until you win on the road, warns Lillard|
|Lowry hails Leonard display as Raptors level series|
|Paxton leads Yankees to win over Red Sox|
|Raptors, Nuggets level NBA playoff matchups|
|Blue Jackets sweep Lightning in huge upset|
|Thomas signs with Patriots|
|Kings hire former Sharks, Oilers coach McLellan|
|MRI confirms torn quad for Warriors star Cousins|
|Clippers want series success after incredible comeback win over Warriors - Rivers|
|The wheels fell off - Curry not dwelling on Warriors´ historic loss|
|Niners star Kittle relishing competition on both sides of the ball|
|Warriors center Cousins ´out for a while´ with thigh injury|
|Hey Seattle, we got a deal! - QB Wilson hints at Seahawks extension|
|Yelich powers Brewers to win over Cardinals|
|Clippers complete biggest comeback in NBA playoff history to stun Warriors|
|DeMarcus Cousins leaves Warriors-Clippers clash with quad injury|
|76ers equal NBA playoff record with stunning third quarter in Nets win|
|Doc Rivers thanks stranger for returning $2k he dropped on street|
|Embiid cleared to play Game 2 against Nets|
|Flyers appoint Vigneault as coach|
|Eagles QB Wentz says back isn´t 100 per cent healed|
|Warriors star Durant undecided on future beyond NBA playoffs|
|Zion Williamson declares for 2019 NBA Draft|
|Sacramento Kings confirm Luke Walton as new coach|
|Rubio explains unorthodox defense of ´crazy´ Harden|
|Giannis not looking for protection from ´dirty´ playoff tactics|
|WATCH: Giannis takes off from near free-throw line for stunning dunk|
|Astros win ninth straight, Marquez snaps Rockies skid|
|Celtics start strong, Harden leads Rockets past Jazz|
|Kerr, Warriors delay film session to watch Tiger win Masters|
|76ers´ Embiid ´questionable´ for game two against Nets|
|Beverley spills! Kerr concerned after Durant ejection against Clippers|
|Stephen Curry rooting for some Tiger Woods ´magic´ in Augusta final round|
|Ben Simmons hits out at the boo-boys after shock 76ers loss|
|It´s pretty special - Stephen Curry breaks Ray Allen´s postseason threes record|