D’Antoni on Calipari Rumor: ‘I Hate It For John More Than Anybody’
The rumors surrounding the Lakers coaching job have been swirling heavily over the last 24 hours. Yesterday, there was a report that University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari would be the next head coach of the team.
Calipari dismissed those rumors and Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak also denied any communication with him. But the Lakers do still have a coach right now, and he has heard the rumors as well.
According to the OC Register’s Bill Oram, they made him feel sorry for the Kentucky coach:
D'Antoni on rumor: "I hate it for John more than anybody." Said it put undue pressure on Kentucky coach before nat'l championship game
— Bill Oram (@bill_oram) April 8, 2014
Kentucky would lose yesterday’s national championship game to the University of Connecticut, 60-54, but this was Calipari’s third trip to the Final Four in the last four years.
D’Antoni continues to do his best to distance himself from any rumors surrounding his possible return to the Lakers next season. The latest rumor has the Lakers leaning towards firing D’Antoni in the offseason, but D’Antoni reiterated that it is not up to him whether he returns or not.
Calipari has done an excellent job in coaching young NBA talents such as Brandon Knight, John Wall, and Anthony Davis while at Kentucky, and he has NBA experience, serving as coach of the New Jersey Nets from 1996-1999.
D’Antoni does have a good point about the timing of the rumors however. His kids undoubtedly heard the same rumors before the biggest game of their lives. We don’t know if that affected how they played last night, but the timing definitely could have been better.
VIDEO: Lakers Rumors – John Calipari To The Lakers? Are The Lakers Leaning Towards Parting Ways With Mike D’Antoni?