…..Absolutely nothing, after just 5 games and a 1-4 record, Mike Brown was fired Friday as Head Coach of the Los Angeles Lakers. It comes as no surprise to this sports fan as I have sensed this day coming after I wrote an article (Crazy Talk) about Mr. Brown 2 weeks ago. The basis of that article was centered on his ridiculous statement that the Lakers were “ahead of schedule”, after finishing the pre-season winless (0-8). Reasons I think that brought on his demise were that the team never had an identity for what it was he wanted to do with the team. His Princeton offense wasn’t clicking, plus Steve Nash injured his foot and will be out for at least another week. The Lakers turned the ball over 20% of the time, worst in the NBA, the lack of defense did not help either (ranked 25th).
The interim Head Coach for now will be Bernie Bickerstaff, who ironically gave Mike Brown his first job in the NBA. Although, Bickerstaff has plenty of coaching experience (14 seasons), he will be counting the days before the new Head Coach is announced. Until then, games will be played and so far the Lakers have responded for Bernie, winning game 1 in convincing fashion (101-77) over the Golden State Warriors. Mitch Kupchak, the Lakers GM, says that there are 2 frontrunners, Phil Jackson, and Mike D’Antoni.
Let us be realistic, all signs are pointing towards “the Zen Master” to take over this team again. During the Lakers game against the Warriors, the crowd got into things by chanting “We Want Phil”. And why wouldn’t they? Phil only led them to 5 NBA Titles (2000-02, 2009-10). His resume is off the charts, 11 titles, over 1,100 wins, and he wins over 70% of games coached. At least one player would love to have Phil on the sidelines again for his team. Kobe Bryant said that he was bothered by the fact that he could not give 100% in Phil’s last season as Lakers coach (’10-’11) because of his knee. Kobe was playing with one leg most of that season, which saw them lose in the playoffs to the eventual champs, the Dallas Mavericks. He felt that he did not send Phil off the right way because of the knee. I know Kobe would love this chance at redemption for that season. Don’t get me wrong, I think Mike D’Antoni is a good coach, but his style of run and gun offense will not work with this very seasoned team.
In closing I will say this. A vote of confidence from your bosses is never a good thing. Mr. Brown: Whenever you hear phrases like they, “have all the faith in you”, that is the kiss of death my friend. After hearing words to that effect, the next thing you should be doing is cleaning out you office. Just ask Bobby Valentine, the former manager of the Boston Red Sox.