Dr. Jerry Buss On Mike D’Antoni Hiring: ‘This Is Who I Want’ Reviewed by Momizat on . Before the Los Angeles Lakers decided to go with Mike D'Antoni as the new head coach of the team, Dr. Jerry Buss was consulted on the decision while in the hosp Before the Los Angeles Lakers decided to go with Mike D'Antoni as the new head coach of the team, Dr. Jerry Buss was consulted on the decision while in the hosp Rating:
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Dr. Jerry Buss On Mike D’Antoni Hiring: ‘This Is Who I Want’

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JerryBussBefore the Los Angeles Lakers decided to go with Mike D’Antoni as the new head coach of the team, Dr. Jerry Buss was consulted on the decision while in the hospital. Buss absorbed all the information, and the Phil Jackson possibility, but ultimately decided D’Antoni was the right man for the job.

Jim Buss spoke with ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne about a number of different topics recently and explained his father’s desire to go with D’Antoni rather than Jackson:

“We did the coaching search and interviews and fed him all the information,” Buss said. “And he said, ‘This is who I want. D’Antoni’s the man.’ Knowing that in the future we had to rebuild, he felt that Phil was not a guy to rebuild. It’s not fair to him. It was actually more of a respectful thought towards Phil.”

All indications pointed to the team giving Jackson the cold shoulder as a result of hiring D’Antoni. Despite that seemingly being the case, Buss claims that it was a respectful gesture to Jackson not to hire him over D’Antoni. Buss and company didn’t want Phil to go through the rebuilding process during the post Kobe Bryant era and felt D’Antoni was more suited for that role.

Apparently, Dr. Buss was for the move and believed D’Antoni was the right man for the job.

Regardless of the team’s intentions, the hiring of D’Antoni had quite the backlash last season with the fans and media not exactly seeing the logic to the move. Not only were the fans baffled by the move to chose D’Antoni over Jackson, but Dwight Howard wasn’t particularly happy either and that may have led to his departure this summer.

Only time will tell if hiring D’Antoni was truly the right move for this team with the veteran head coach being put to the test next season and throughout the rest of his time in Los Angeles.


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  • Jim213

    Similar info posted a few months back with Jim Buss? Know this…

  • Lakeshow

    Yeah last I checked Phil Jackson rebuilt the Lakers to championship form twice!! Once in 2000 and when he returned in 2005 they were championship contenders again within 3 years of returning, and was willing to return a third time to help rebuild the new squad.

    • Terrence

      He didn’t build that team in 2000. It took several years before he was hired to get that core together. The 2008 team took 5 years to build culminating in the trade for Pau Gasol and they only traded for him because Andrew Bynum went down. Look at how long most teams rebuilds last, usually 5-10 years. Phil Jackson is 67 now. How long do you think he would have been able to keep going?

      • Daryl Peek

        Well said. You can tell who are the young uninformed

        • lakeshow

          Young and uninformed are terms used to describe Clipper and Heat fans who can’t even name their own bench. Also FYI I have been a loyal Laker fan since the 80′s and have witnessed them for a pretty long time so Im very well informed. I have accepted that Phil is never going to be the coach because that time has passed and have a little more confidence that this fresh squad will work with Dantoni because last years squad wasn’t built for that. Overall, my point being towards the article was that Phil was a major part of the rebuilding process and helped them become championship contenders resulting in 7 NBA finals appearances and 5 wins. I have nothing against how Jerry wanted Dantoni because I have faith in his choices, I just doubt the Jerry actually stated those quotes about Phil.

          • richard

            I think we can all agree that Phil didn’t exactly build teams from the ground up – as in develop rookie talents to championship caliber players… he was more of a re-builder rather than initiator of the build… but the foundations he installed in the teams he had where all can be considered important in the building process…no coach can build a championship overnight… he has to have the right players for the Triangle offense to work… so, just by getting those players and having them come together to play together under one single goal is itself a team building process…

            A lot of people tends to look at building a team the same as grooming a talent… surely that is not the case in anyway…although, one can build a championship team while grooming a talent… Phil – Kobe dynamics.

          • http://www.facebook.com/eddie.lazaro123 Eddie Lazaro

            I say he groomed Kobe but as far as building a team, it is not his cup of tea. He does not have a keen eye for raw talent. That’s all West. He even said that he does not like the idea of having the 17yr old Kobe on the draft, saying further that he’d (Kobe) be better of going to college.

            For years, we always trade our draft pick, majority of them during his tenure because he does not like coaching college students but ended up grooming a high school graduate.

            Though he’s a great coach, Phil is a dirty manipulative person that instigate the ouster of West. He fueled the rift between Shaq and Kobe to get the best of them, ending the relationship of the tandem that could have been so potent for more years had they stayed together. His goal is to have a full control of the FO and to be a part owner of the Lakers, but Dr Buss read his motives and intentions, declining of his ownership request. That triggers the rift between the doctor and Jeannie in siding with Phil.

            Phil is using Jeannie now to finish what he wanted since the Doctor is gone. He showed his unethical side of him when he had the team not committed and not ready in playoffs of 2004 and 2011.

          • richard

            @facebook-100000894805097:disqus… I think you are mistaken here sir… Phil wasn’t with the Lakers when they drafted Kobe in 96… he coach them in 99… I am not sure where your hate of Phil came from. IMO Phil is a good assessor of talent. But his assessment always was in line with how he runs his teams, its personnel needs. WOuldn’t it be right to be able to have a say about getting a player when you are a coach? If I were a coach, I would always have a say in what type of player FO should get. Otherwise, why am I being hired to coach if I can’t have the freedom to choose which player I want on my team? Isn’t that the same thing being afforded of MDA today?

            Again, his assessment of players was always about his team and its needs in the offense and defense.

            Phil is using Jeanne? … I don’t buy that… except if I am jealous of the man…. shessh.

          • http://www.facebook.com/eddie.lazaro123 Eddie Lazaro

            I don’t hate Phil, and as said, he was a great coach, but If you look back on one of the major reason why West left, the over blown rift between Shaq and Kobe, His desires to control the FO. He is always involved and has something to do with it. He wants to take the Lakers hostage in his insistence of getting an ownership share that Dr Buss declined knowing that Kobe wants him back in 2005. I know he did not Draft Kobe, that was all West, and if you look back on the draft interviews about Kobe, he is one of those who are not happy drafting the high school phenom. Phil even said that Kobe is better off going to college.

            I like him as a coach, but he does not have a keen eye for raw talent, that’s West. His idea of coaching is to get the quickest possible way of filling the roster, and though it is cheaper to groom young talent, it became a habit that we have been trading our draft picks since he joined the Lakers, as he goes for the short cut, but very expensive route of getting FA ending with the Lakers having the highest payroll every year since he joined and being in the cap dilemma with the new CBA.
            Phil will never be back to the Lakers if Dr Buss is alive. He burned his bridges with Dr Buss.
            Do you ever wonder why of all the kids, Jeannie being the old mans favorite, the one who knows more about the game, the one who had been groomed and exposed to the League, but when the doctor died, the power of handling the team landed on Jimmy’s name?
            The old man is gone now and so his best chance of getting a piece of Lakers pie is thru Jeannie, who else, the other kids won’t give it to him.

          • richard

            Draft, free agents… and how did it go… didn’t we had 5 rings as a result? How many rings do you think we would have won if we follow the formula of OKC, which is building through the draft? Yeah, right, last I counted that kind of strategy… NONE so far… the better way to win is through free agency.. look at history and you will know…

            all things you mentioned about West and PIE’s are just pure speculation… conclusions that may or may not have been…

          • http://www.facebook.com/eddie.lazaro123 Eddie Lazaro

            Have you looked at the Riley era, Magic, Worthy, Cooper, Green, Divac, also, we never had any problem with the payroll then, but came out to be too expensive to bear even now, we are still paying for it.

            BTW, the rift with West and Dr Buss was real then, came to the medias attention when Phil would not even let West, his BOSS and Dr Buss, the OWNER to watch the team during practice saying they are just disruptions, but brought in Dennis Rodman into his roster.

          • richard

            the CBA’s had something to do with it and how the player contracts have been structured…you can build your team through the draft all you want… but in today’s NBA… it won’t get you rings… look at the teams that won them all in the last 20 years… many teams have gone through the draft way, and I can’t recall one team in recent years that has gone to win it all, unless i have been hibernating these last 3 decades. Instruct me.

            For a start, let’s take for example OKC… Durant’s and Westbrooke’s contract are going to command max salary in their next contract… how do you suppose are they going to go under the cap holding all their drafted players in the next 5 years? Do you really believe they are going to win a championship soon. I don’t believe so. They are not better than they were last season. In fact, if you would consider it, they are actually weaker this upcoming season. They will probably, break that group sooner than later.

            Miami was built on free agency. Last time I looked, they just won. Houston have been building through free agency, and we are seeing its fruit. They are following what the Lakers have been doing and I think they like their chances.

          • http://www.facebook.com/eddie.lazaro123 Eddie Lazaro

            I agree with you, but if you look again at OKC, they should have done it all the way thru 2yrs ago, when they still have Harden. I know you will probably question this but there are good coach and there are great coach and until they get over the hump (same with players) and get that championship (like Lebron), there are still some missing elements in their coaching expertise.

            Brooks, tho is good and have the most athletic roster in the league, does not know how to finish it yet. The same thing happened with Sloan, D’Antoni, Adelman, Brown, Carl, etc. They all fold when the pressure of the Big Stage hit them. They all were able to go to the finals but were not able to get back to form to get that Championship they came for.
            I do believe that with the roster of OKC, if it was coached by Riley, or Jackson, or Popovich, they could have won it all (even back 2 back) the way. I also believe that to be competitive, even if we get stars from FA, we should consider grooming out drafts for farming potential stars to keep us competitive and affordable a lot longer than relying solely on expensive FA.
            Like this year, we have a lot of potential stars that are teams give away, either they don’t fit their roster, or previous coaches don’t like them or teams don’t think they are good enough to stay. But the opportunity of having them for bargains may work best on our favor, considering we are financially strapped due to the new CBA cap restrictions.

            We can groom some of these kids and keep them in our roster, as It is not always the big names and big payroll that takes the gold home, but Belief & Faith on each other, Synchronicity and Cohesion of players, coaches & FO motivated to one goal, and that is Winning, Winning it all the Way.
            Miami will be hard to beat due to the presence of Riley and Spo having that “can not shake me no more” due to his back 2 back Championships, same with Lebron who got it started after getting the gold from the 2008 Olympics.

            Houston is still a big question mark for me. Tho McHale is a defensive coach, D12 shooting is very predictable, his game is so inconsistent that there will be times he will be the teams liability, 3sec violations, not being able to dribble inside the paint and not making a reasonable free throw % to take the team to Win. To be honest, I like our chances better than the rockets.
            If everyone will come to training camp with a good bill of health and can stay that way for the rest of the season, our team will be very Dangerous! Players will let the game come to them since there is not much pressure, they don’t have anything to loose.

            We have a bunch of good guys, and each have something to prove, and majority of them wants to get the contract and the extensions to have a home. I see a team ready to Shake and trample down everyone on their path comes January, and take it all the way as far as they can be.

          • Daryl Peek

            Why would you question those comments being said of Phil by Dr. Buss?

            Dr. Buss has been trying to move on from Phil and the triangle since 2004. Remember it was Dr. Buss who let Phil walk in 04, thus the fracture between he and Jeanie began. It was Dr. Buss who didn’t like the triangle style of play. It was Dr. Buss, Jimmy and West who bumped heads with Phil. It was Dr. Buss who wanted to fire Phil in 2008 after losing to the Celtics in the finals. It was Dr. Buss who let Phil walk again in 2011. It was Dr. Buss who was apprehensive about rehiring Phil in 2005. There’s an interview on youtube Dr. Buss had with Michael Eaves in 2005 where he clearly showed this. It also corroborates everything Jimmy has recently said about how things worked with the basketball operations decision making collective; Dr. Buss, Jimmy and Mitch. When Eaves asked about the rehiring of Phil in that interview, at 10 plus mil a season and the potential of giving Phil a FO/ownership stake in the team, Dr. Buss was very standoffish in replying “ABSOLUTELY NOT!”

            Those remember all of these truths and many others I could list about the Lakers history can easily come to the conclusion it’s not unreasonable to believe what Jimmy is saying in this article.

            Ramona Shelburne 11:51 AM – 18 Feb 13@ramonashelburne

            I didn’t mention this at the time, because he asked me not to, but Jim Buss watched almost every game with his father at the hospital

            Why is it so hard to believe Jimmy and Mitch didn’t have business conversations about the team?

      • Lakeshow

        Yeah obviously it also takes more than the coach to build a team but Phil was the coach when they earned those rings and it was he who helped bring them to championship mentality. I guess I should have said he HELPED build rather than build on his own, but there is no denying that Phil played a huge factor in those years of success because he was more than just a coach, he helped the players work cohesively, and brought mental stability so they can play calmly under pressure which is why its no coincidence that Kobe is as great a closer as Jordan. Therefore Phil was a major impact on those rebuilding processes. Yeah his age is a factor but with him marrying into the Buss family, he might have stayed longer than expected.

        • Daryl Peek

          Phil was a great seller of Tex Winters triangle system, and a GREAT motivator of superstars. His Zen was a calming philosophy but Phil antagonized and fueled the Kobe, Shaq feud. Robert Horry was one of the whistle blowers that brought this to light. Tex Winter was also. Jerry West and Tex Winter were the peace keepers.

          “We would have probably lasted much longer together if West had not left” –Kobe & Shaq

          We all know who helped run West off.

          The success of the Triangle era was a blast for me as a Laker fan. I absolutely acknowledge Phil’s role in making that happen for us. I also choose not to ignore the drama that he conditioned.

          Jerry West built the Lake Show. Del Harris groomed them. Phil refined them. Phil self admitted that his style of coaching has a tenure ceiling. The way he pits stars against each other, to get them to out do each other in competing, wears on them eventually. Phil’s exact words on this were expressed in a interview he had with Dan Patrick. If I’m correct Patrick asked Phil about the long standing success Greg Popovich has with the Spurs. In reply Phil said his message gets lost within the player coach dynamic over time and the team burns out.

    • Downtoearth2

      Nobody read your comments,you have to log on facebook in order to comment.

      • richard

        not really…you can still post comment without logging in to fb.

  • Matt Williams

    I call bullshit. Jerry Buss wanted a winner. D’Antoni has never won a championship. Something’s fishy.

    • Daryl Peek

      Pat Riley had never won a championship when Dr. Buss hired him. Paul Westhead had won a championship when Dr. Buss fired him just like he did Phil in 2004. Where the BS comes in is people trying to simplify the process with CHIP arguments.

      Nothing last forever and Dr. Buss had many issues with Phil.

  • Daryl Peek

    The daggers are gonna be flying by all the Jackson worshipers over this. *ducks to avoid unfriendly fire*

  • 5xob

    Uh jerry wanted showtime back, he never liked slow ball, #fact yell

  • http://www.ecodrivecn.com/ Jil

    Only time will tell. And hope god bless lakers.

  • 3339

    This whole story seems messed up. It really seems like jim buss knows he messed up with the dantoni hire and is now trying to deflect the criticism on to his father, who is no longer here to defend himself.

    • Jim213

      Wouldn’t go to that extreme but in a previous article (few months ago) they mentioned that Jim Bust chose the man for the job given Dr. Buss’s wishes. So don’t have a choice but to go with it for now.

  • richard

    Watching game 6 of 2010 nba finals against Boston… man… the Lakers are so strong in this game.

  • ra

    OK, this was really a year ago (or so). Dr. Buss is in basketball heaven (or, poker heaven, etc.). The article title is in the present tense (“This is who I want”), so either someone here is in touch with Dr. Buss’s spirit, or maybe we shouldn’t worry at this time what Dr. Buss said ‘last year’, right?

  • The Rock

    Great choice by DR. Jerry Buss pure genius in picking Mike D’Antoni.Honestly what a great coach MDA is he was 28-12 in the last 40 games he coached in last season.

    And that was with a injured bickering roster.Imagine how great he will be as Lakers head coach with a team that is fully healthy and not bickering?

    The only reason the Lakers got swept by the Spurs is the injury Kobe had and also Nash,Blake,Meeks were out.Or otherwise we would have beat the Spurs.Best coach in the NBA is MDA.I am one of his biggest fans and biggest supporters on.MDA is awesome,he is what we need to win championships.RIP Jerry Buss.I Love MDA and Jerry Buss.

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