There have been numerous reports that Byron Scott will become the next Los Angeles Lakers head coach, however, the team insists that no agreement has been reached according to ABC News in Los Angeles on July 27.
Scott, who last coached the Cleveland Cavaliers for three seasons (2010-2013),told KCBS-TV he will take over the club, which hasn’t had a coach since Mike D’Antoni resigned April 30.
“It feels fantastic,” Scott told KCBS. “This is a dream come true. I always wanted to coach the Lakers, especially when I got to coaching. It’s so unreal. I have to thank (general manager) Mitch (Kupchak), (owners) Jeanie and Jim Buss to give me this opportunity.”
Yet Kupchak and the Buss’ remained mum Sunday, extending their coach-less summer to the final days of July.
ESPN.com first reported, on July 26, Scott would take over the Lakers with a four-year, $17 million contract.
So, if Scott indeed becomes the next head coach for the purple and gold is a good fit.
The answer is an unequivocal yes.
Scott played for the Lakers, where he won three NBA championships, for his first 10 seasons in the league after being selected by the San Diego Clippers with the fourth overall selection in 1983 draft. Scott was traded to the Clippers in exchange for Norm Nixon.
Scott has a close relationship with Kobe Bryant – Scott and Bryant played together during Scott’s final NBA season in 1996-1997 — and is familiar with the talent of the current roster, having worked last season as an analyst for the Lakers television station, Time Warner Cable SportsNet.
“He was my rookie mentor when I first came into the league,” Bryant said during his basketball camp in Santa Barbara, California, three weeks ago. “So, I had to do things like get his doughnuts and run errands for him and things like that. We’ve had a tremendously close relationship throughout the years. So, obviously, I know him extremely well. He knows me extremely well. I’ve always been a fan of his.”
Scott was also impressive during his three interviews with the team according to Ramone Shelbourne of Espn.com , The Lakers were said to be the most impressed with Scott’s reputation as being strong minded defensively and a disciplinarian – both qualities are exactly what the team needs.
In addition, Scott is an extremely experienced head coach- — having served 13 years as the top man on the bench for three teams (New Jersey, New Orleans and Cleveland). While Scott has a career losing record (416-517), he has been to the playoffs four times which includes two trips to the NBA Finals. Scott had the misfortune of guiding the Cavaliers a year after LeBron James left for the Miami Heat.
The Lakers basically overhauled their roster this offseason and will likely struggle to make the playoffs in the tough Western Conference. But there is some talent in Los Angeles, led by Bryant. but it’ll be a challenge for Scott to make the pieces fit.
Jeremy Lin (acquired in a trade with the Houston Rockets), Carlos Boozer (who the was amnestied by the Chicago Bulls) and rookie Julius Randle along with holdovers Steve Nash, Xavier Henry, Nick Young and Jordan Hill are expected to be the team’s other main attractions this season.
Lionel Hollins, Alvin Gentry, Kurt Rambis, Mike Dunleavy and George Karl were the other known candidates for the job.