Like us to subscribe
The Los Angeles Lakers hired Mike Brown as their new head coach in late May as Phil Jackson's replacement, passing over longtime assistant -- and Triangle offense disciple -- Brian Shaw in the process. Unfortunately, the front office didn't tell Shaw about this until he watched Brown's introductory interview on ESPN.
Shaw doesn't appear to be pleased by this, either, according to an interview he did on ESPN Radio.
"I wasn't really told anything," said Shaw, who had the public backing of players Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher, among others, to take over for Jackson. "Unfortunately, I found about not getting the job and who was hired for the job on ESPN. I didn't really talk to anyone for about three weeks after that."
He had good reason to not talk to his former team, too, considering the way they passed him over despite his credentials and familiarity with the team.
"At that point, all the speculation and what I've heard, the powers making those decisions felt like the team needed a change of culture and a new voice, and head in a new direction," Shaw said. "I thought that was kind of peculiar because in the 12 years I'd been there, all we had done was gone to the championship seven times and won five championships. I felt like there were 29 other teams in the league that would love to have that kind of culture and that kind of direction. ... But I didn't expect anything to be handed to me."
Shaw has since found himself as the associate head coach of the Indiana Pacers under Frank Vogel, but it sounds like he thinks he deserved to stay in LA. In all reality, he may have been right, though it's clearly too soon to tell.
It's okay, everyone. Calm down. Now that we all know that Kobe Bryant and new Los Angeles Lakers coach Mike Brown don't actually hate each other, or at least reportedly don't hate each other, we can all get a good night's sleep.
When Mike Brown was first hired as the head coach of the Lakers, succeeding Phil Jackson, reports painted Kobe Bryant as an unhappy man. He's the star and the face of a franchise, not to mention a veteran leader of the team, and he felt like he should have been consulted by ownership about the hire. He wasn't, and he was displeased.
Now, Brown and Bryant have reportedly spoken in person on more than one occasion and their conversations have relieved Bryant's concerns. Of course, Bryant himself hasn't said those exact words or anything close to them, but that's probably because he wants some privacy in the offseason, not because he has a problem with Brown.
Oh, who knows. It'll be a fun 2011-12 NBA season, provided it actually takes place. Lockouts!
It's no secret that the hiring of Mike Brown as the head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers was not widely popular among the media and fans. After years of running the triangle offense under head coach Phil Jackson, Brown will almost certainly be shifting the team to a new offense, in addition to putting considerably more focus on the defensive side of the ball. That latter point isn't necessarily a bad thing, but Mike Brown still has plenty of haters. In his introductory press conference today, Brown took some time out to answer questions and dismiss those haters in the process, while also praising his superstar, Kobe Bryant. Via SB Nation Los Angeles:
On what he'd say to those who don't feel he's qualified or capable enough for the prestigious job:
"Everyone is entitled to their opinion. I respect that. Everyone has jobs to do. Winning will cure all that."
On Kobe's role:
"This is still his team. Kobe is Kobe. He has five titles and is one of the greatest ever. His role will not change. We'll make sure he'll have the ball in the sweet spots he likes to have it."
He's right about one thing, winning does cure almost all problems in sports. If Mike Brown and the Lakers can win basketball games, the criticism will suddenly evaporate.
Mike Brown will be introduced as the new head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers in a Tuesday press conference. The press conference will be held at 3 p.m. Pacific and will be broadcast live at Lakers.com. The team said last week that it was working through the final details to make Brown the franchise's replacement for Phil Jackson, who retired after the Lakers were eliminated in the second round of the NBA Playoffs.
Brown worked for ESPN as a studio analyst for the past year after being fired by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2010. Brown led the Cavs to the 2007 NBA Finals in his first head coaching job in the NBA, and was named the 2009 Coach of the Year. He has huge shoes to fill; Jackson has an NBA record 11 championships as coach, and has the highest winning percentage in league history for coaches with more than one season under their belt.
In an absolutely stunning turn of events, Lakers vice president Jim Buss is expressing regrets about not contacting Kobe Bryant before hiring Mike Brown as the Lakers' next head coach and successor to Phil Jackson this week. From the Los Angeles Times:
"Looking back on it, we should have contacted Kobe," Buss says. "Kobe said it was management's job to pick a coach. He just said, 'Defense first.' That's what we were doing, but we should have reached out to him."
Buss is, however, encouraged by the idea that Brown's work ethic might impress Bryant, who he calls "the workaholic."
Our Lakers blog, Silver Screen and Roll, is skeptical enough of this interview to wonder whether this might be a "spin job," but concedes that Buss even agreeing to sit down and talk about the decision proves that the Lakers' new boss isn't "completely oblivious." Pro Basketball Talk's Matt Moore wonders if this public admission means a private apology to Bryant happened, and, if so, whether that means anything.
Mike Brown is the new coach of the Los Angeles Lakers, a move that's left the media surprised, Laker fans cautiously optimistic, and Kobe Bryant ominously silent. But another decision on Wednesday raised even more eyebrows. If it wasn't clear who's running the Lakers beforehand, firing Ronnie Lester, a scout who's worked with the for 25 years, removes all doubt.
Hiring Brown without consulting Kobe Bryant--and (apparently) without seriously considering Phil Jackson's longtime assistant, Brian Shaw--sent a message that beyond the facade of Kobe-catering, the Lakers have real authority running their organization. They weren't going to hire whoever Kobe and Phil had handpicked to guide the franchise. That's fine.
But firing Lester hints that all that hardline authority may be a facade, itself. Maybe the Brown hire wasn't a case of management digging in its heels and making a bold choice. Instead, we're watching a franchise that's shaking up its very foundation.
Make no mistake: People like Ronnie Lester are exactly the sort of behind-the-scenes guys that gradually form the backbone of NBA teams. General managers, coaches, even superstars... They come and go. But lifelong employees like Lester are the ones that bridge the gap between regimes. And it all smacks of a guy who doesn't quite know what he's doing.
That would be Jim Buss, Jerry's son, and the according to most reports, the guy responsible for hiring Brown and firing Lester. By hiring Brown, he sent a clear message to Kobe Bryant about who's in charge, a move that aligns Buss closer to Andrew Bynum in the simmering power struggle between Bryant and Bynum. But here's where the logic gets twisted: By firing Lester, he just got rid of the scout that brought Bynum to L.A. in the first place.
It's a minor move in the mainstream, but for Lakers employees, losing someone like Lester is akin to cutting ties with a family member. And it just makes no sense. It'd be one thing if this was a case of making a hard decision for the sake of financial sanity, but the Lakers have plenty of money going around. They have the richest TV deal in the league, and they're one of the only teams in the NBA that routinely turns a profit. It's not like they need to cut costs.
Anyway, Jim Buss may have a vision for the Lakers, but if he's taking over, then we should remember that the Lakers aren't the winningest franchise in the last 25 years by coincidence. People like Ronnie Lester were the bedrock. If Buss wants to excavate and build his own legacy, he can.
It's his team now. He's made that clear.
Jim Buss was lucky enough to be born into billions and inherit a dynasty, and he can proceed however he wants. Ronnie Lester may have felt like a family member to some of the people around the Lakers, but in the end, there's only one family member that matters going forward.
For now, it's probably unfair to call him a failure before he's proven otherwise, but it's a fact that he just fired a guy who'd proven himself over a quarter century, and I feel pretty comfortable hedging against the success of the Jim Buss era. Running a business or a basketball team, you don't get rich by discounting the intangible value of characters like that.
Of course, if you're born rich, you never learn that much. So, who did Buss keep around instead? Well, hey... According to TMZ, she discovered Jordan Farmar!
The Los Angeles Lakers for the first time publicly acknowledged talks with Mike Brown, the reported next coach of the franchise. In a brief statement released Wednesday afternoon, the Lakers said they have an outline of an agreement in place with the former Cleveland Cavaliers chief.
"In response to rampant speculation and reports about our head coaching position and Mike Brown, we've met with Mike and are very impressed with him," the statement reads. "In addition, we have an outline for an agreement in place and hope to sign a contract within the next few days."
News broke late Tuesday that the Lakers were in serious talks with Brown, who was fired by the Cavaliers in 2010 after Cleveland finished the season with the league's best record but flamed out in the second round of the NBA Playoffs. On Wednesday, reports that Brown was preparing to sign a four-year deal worth $18 million broke.
For more on the Lakers, visit Silver Screen And Roll.
Mike Brown isn't the only big personnel news at Los Angeles Lakers headquarters on Wednesday: Dave McMenamin of ESPN L.A. reports that Ronnie Lester, the team's assistant general manager and someone whose been with the franchise for a quarter of a century, won't be retained beyond the end of June.
Lester played for the Lakers for two years in the 1980s, then became a scout. McMenamin cites him as the scout who brought Andrew Bynum into the fold ahead of the 2005 NBA Draft. He's spent the past 10 years as an assistant GM under Mitch Kupchak.
It's unclear exactly why he's on the way out; Jim Buss has apparently taken over operation of the franchise in some exclusivity as Phil Jackson moves into retirement. Lakers expert and author Roland Lazenby tweeted Wednesday that Buss is "determined ... to remove Phil's imprimatur and influence." McMenamin reports that along with Lester, a number of Lakers scouts, trainers and video analysts will be jettisonned. Reports of these dismissals made the rounds during the Lakers' season-ending series against the Dallas Mavericks.
Kupchak remains in place, but how long he is for the job is anybody's guess. This is unprecedented turnover for the NBA's glamor franchise, at least over the past few decades.
Mike Brown is all set to become the next Los Angeles Lakers head coach, according to multiple reports, and the big question is whether Lakers star Kobe Bryant approves. ESPN's Chris Broussard is reporting that he does, but all other signs point the other way. Earlier on Wednesday, Bryant admitted he was "surprised" when he heard Brown was in the running. Now that the news is out there, he is keeping his mouth shut.
The Los Angeles Times reached out to Bryant to comment on Brown's impending hire, and Bryant declined.
People familiar with Kobe Bryant's thinking said that the All-Star guard was confused by the decision.
When reached Wednesday by The Times about the Brown hire, Bryant had no comment.
It's possible Bryant declined to comment because the news was not official, but if you read between the lines, it's hard not to come to the conclusion that he is not fully on board with the Lakers' decision. Earlier, Bryant endorsed Lakers' assistant coach Brian Shaw for the job.
Mike Brown will be the next coach of the Los Angeles Lakers, according to ESPN's Chris Broussard. Broussard is reporting that Brown has signed a four-year, $18.25 million contract to replace Phil Jackson behind the Lakers' bench. The fourth year is a team option, according to Broussard.
Brown last coached for five years with the Cleveland Cavaliers before getting fired in 2010. He was reportedly offered the job on Tuesday night, and a deal was quickly agreed upon. Brown beats out Lakers assistant coach Brian Shaw, former Houston Rockets coach Rick Adelman and former Los Angeles Clippers coach Mike Dunleavy to get the job.
Broussard is also reporting that star Kobe Bryant is "on board" with the decision to hire Brown. This was called into question earlier in the day, when Bryant said he was "surprised" to hear Brown was the front-runner. Bryant had previously endorsed Shaw for the position.
The Lakers will announce Brown's hiring later Wednesday afternoon. Brown had gone 272-138 in five seasons in Cleveland coaching LeBron James, including guiding the Cavaliers to the 2007 NBA Finals.
Mike Brown is getting even closer to being named the next head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers. Brown and the Lakers are reportedly finalizing negotiations, and he could be officially named as head coach as soon as Wednesday afternoon, according to Dave McMenamin of ESPN Los Angeles.
Brown has reportedly been offered a contract "in the ballpark" of four years and $18 million, according to McMenamin. He became the favorite for the job after what was deemed as a "strong face-to-face interview" with key members of the Lakers' hierarchy, including executive vice president of player personnel Jim Buss.
The news of Brown's possible hire surprised star Kobe Bryant earlier in the day, so it will be interesting to see how it is received if indeed it does get finalized. Bryant had endorsed assistant coach Brian Shaw for the job.
Mike Brown will likely be the next coach of the Los Angeles Lakers. Life shouldn't be too different from how it was under Phil Jackson ... unless Kobe Bryant leads a players' revolt.
How the next coach of the Los Angeles Lakers handles Kobe Bryant, a hyperaggressive superstar moving deep into his 30s, will be among the most important factors in whether said coach succeeds. As the Lakers prepare to hire Mike Brown, then, let it be known that, according to SI.com's Sam Amick, Kobe is "surprised" at the news that Brown is the choice, having stumped for longtime Lakers assistant Brian Shaw.
Brown, the former coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers, has reportedly been offered a contract and could become the new coach of the Lakers as soon as Wednesday. Brown's candidacy was just recently confirmed; he had been the top candidate for the vacant Golden State Warriors position, but the Lakers' job is more appealing as L.A. is ready (and determined) to contend for championships, not just a playoff spot.
Amick also reports, as does Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times, that Kobe was not consulted about hiring Brown. Amick reports that Jim Buss, the heir apparent to longtime Lakers owner Jerry Buss, led this hiring process and has chosen Brown. It's unclear how Jim Buss' relationship with Kobe plays into the Shaw snub, or how the decision not to hire Shaw will affect Kobe's feelings toward Buss. Jim Buss is widely known to be a huge backer of Andrew Bynum, though; don't be surprised if the Lakers' on-court pecking order is disturbed along the way, with Bynum taking new importance.
The Los Angeles Lakers have offered Mike Brown a three-year deal worth at least $4 million per season to become the team's new head coach, reports Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times. Yahoo!'s Adrian Wojnarowski reported late Tuesday that the Lakers and Brown were in serious talks on a contract; Turner reports that if Brown consents to the salary offer, he could be hired as soon as Wednesday.
Turner reports that Brown had been looking for a contract worth at least $4 million per season for four years; the reported deal with the Lakers has a team option with partial salary guarantee in the fourth year.
Brown coached the Cleveland Cavaliers from 2005 to 2010, earning a trip to the 2007 NBA Finals and winning the 2009 NBA Coach of the Year award. Like Phil Jackson, the legend he'd replace in La La Land, he's a laissez faire game coach who trust his superstar(s). But his strategy is heavily tilted toward defense, and his offense system -- a steady diet of high screen-rolls and isolation plays for LeBron James -- received constant criticism.
Mike Brown may be on his way to becoming the Los Angeles Lakers next head coach, according to a report from Yahoo!‘s Adrian Wojnarowksi. Over the weekend, Brown’s name emerged as a candidate, and it appears the process has accelerated to the point where the two sides are nearing an agreement. Previously, Los Angeles had targeted a broad-array of candidates, including Shaw, who appears to be out of the picture now.
While the two sides are in serious talks, Wojnarowski cautions there are issues and may be pitfalls involved in the contract negotiations. If the hurdles are passed, Brown could be the Lakers’ next head coach in 24 hours.
The two sides are working out issues that could be dealbreakers and cause the Lakers to go to another candidate, sources said, but there’s clearly momentum toward Brown becoming the next head coach.
Brown currently works with ESPN as an analyst. His last job in the NBA came as the lead man of the Cleveland Cavaliers, a position he held from 2005-2010 before losing his job following the team’s second round exit in the playoffs.
Mike Brown, an NBA Coach of the Year award winner and from 2005 to 2009 the coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers, is a candidate to replace Phil Jackson as the head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers, reports Marc Stein of ESPN.com. Brown joines Lakers assistant Brian Shaw, former L.A. Clippers coach Mike Dunleavy and former Houston Rockets coach Rick Adelman among leading candidates for the position, vacated with Jackson's retirement following the Lakers' dismissal from the NBA Playoffs by the Dallas Mavericks.
Brown currently works as a studio analyst for ESPN. He was fired by the Cavaliers after five seasons at the helm; under his direction, Cleveland went to the 2007 NBA Finals, where the team was swept by the San Antonio Spurs. In Brown's final season, during which his star LeBron James won the MVP, the Cavaliers finished the regular season with the league's best record but were dismissed in six games by the Boston Celtics in the second round.
Brown has a reputation as a defensive-minded coach; Cleveland actually brought in an "offensive coordinator" late in his tenure. Dunleavy is also considered a defensive-minded coach; Adelman's team have typically been more well-known for their offenses. Shaw has never been a head coach.
Mike Dunleavy, most recently the head coach of the Los Angeles Clippers, is a candidate for the open Los Angeles Lakers job, reports Ramona Shelburne of ESPNLA.com. Dunleavy coached the Lakers after Pat Riley left the franchise in 1990, and led the team to the 1991 NBA Finals, where L.A. lost to the Chicago Bulls, coached by none other than Phil Jackson, whose retirement created the team's current opening.
Dunleavy resigned as coach of the Clippers in the middle of the 2009-10 season, but maintained his general manager duties. Clippers' franchisee Donald Sterling stripped those duties at the end of the season, and, according to a lawsuit filed by Dunleavy, has refused to make good on the final year of that contract.
Los Angeles Lakers assistant coach Brian Shaw is one of the leading candidates to replace retiring Phil Jackson as the team's next head coach. That is, unless he doesn't take another coaching job first. Shaw has received permission from Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak to interview for the Golden State Warriors' coaching position, according to Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times.
Shaw is interviewing for a Warriors opening vacated by Keith Smart, who was fired after just one season. Shaw has interviewed for head coaching jobs in the past, most notably the Cleveland Cavaliers' position last season, but for him to be interviewing at this point certainly throws into doubt whether the Lakers want to hire him to replace Jackson.
Kupchak confirmed that fellow assistant Chuck Person, who also is a candidate for the Lakers job, has received permission to talk to the Warriors as well. Person, Shaw and former Houston Rockets coach Rick Adelman remain the leading candidates to replace Jackson.
The Los Angeles Lakers are "very interested" in Rick Adelman as a replacement for retired head coach Phil Jackson, reports ESPN.com's Marc Stein. Adelman was let go by the Houston Rockets after a 43-39 but playoffs-free season; Adelman had previously coached the Sacramento Kings, Golden State Warriors and Portland Trail Blazers, and is certainly a West Coast guy.
SI.com's Sam Amick reported earlier Thursday that Lakers assistant coaches Brian Shaw and Chuck Person were among the early candidates to replace Jackson, who had announced at season's start he planned to retire and kept that promise despite a seriously disappointing finish for L.A. The Lakers were swept 4-0 in the conference semifinals by the Dallas Mavericks.
Adelman is seen as a coach liable to allow his stars to guide themselves in game action, and his offensive style trends toward up-tempo, pass-heavy sets versus the more methodical Triangle that Jackson employed. It's unclear whether Shaw or Person would commit to maintaining the Triangle, or whether Lakers ownership even wants that to happen.
Phil Jackson has retired from coaching, leaving the suddenly retooling Los Angeles Lakers without a coach. Sam Amick of SI.com reports that current Lakers assistants Brian Shaw and Chuck Person will receive consideration, but that the search will also reach outside the organization.
Amick floats Rick Adelman, recently ousted by the Houston Rockets. Adelman is one of the more successful coaches in NBA history in terms of wins and winning percentage, and his Portland Trail Blazers and Sacramento Kings were stopped only by Jackson's Bulls and Lakers in championship quests. Adelman has not been confirmed as a candidate the Lakers are interested in, but Amick quotes longtime Adelman assistant Elston Turner as saying R.A. would be up for the job and all the media attention it comes with.
We'll email you a reset link.
If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.
You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.
We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.
You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.
We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.
Choose an available username to complete sign up.
In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.