Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak Q&A: No. 7 Draft Pick, Kobe, Coaching Search Reviewed by Momizat on . PAGES: 1 | 2 | 3 Kupchak: “Well, I think right now our interviews will be formal in terms of sitting down and talking for a couple hours but at some point we’ll PAGES: 1 | 2 | 3 Kupchak: “Well, I think right now our interviews will be formal in terms of sitting down and talking for a couple hours but at some point we’ll Rating: 0
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Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak Q&A: No. 7 Draft Pick, Kobe, Coaching Search

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Kupchak: “Well, I think right now our interviews will be formal in terms of sitting down and talking for a couple hours but at some point we’ll probably have to sit down a second time. I think that’s where we are right now, at the beginning of the process. And, whether it’s a veteran coach or a rookie coach that’s not something we’re prepared to comment on right now.”

Question: Going back to the draft, was there anything you were able to zero on in for guys that are going to be in this range. When are you going to start having players come in?

Kupchak: “Well, the combine has evolved over the years and the most useful information at the combine is really the interview process and the testing and medical/physical process. There’s very limited basketball activity. The guys that did work out really aren’t lottery players at least this week. Based on workouts going forward maybe somebody could jump in there but right now they were just not that quality of player and it’s not to say the other guys that worked out at the combine wont be in the NBA or be drafted in the first round, but as you know, most of the lottery guys quote unquote did not play.”

Question: With the guys now, do you plan on zeroing in with this pick or keeping it broad still?

Kupchak: “We started last night calling trying to set up workouts, with probably everybody in the top 15 to 20. Some of those guys don’t think they are gonna be there at seven so they won’t come in, nothing we can do about that. But, some guys that are drafted later you may say why bring a guy who might go 20. Well you never know, number one, and number two, you have the opportunity to develop a relationship with a player, so you know why not do it? So, that started last night.”

Question: On the coaching front, I know you don’t want to talk specific names, but could your situation be impacted by somebody like Derek Fisher or another assistant who is still in the playoffs? Are the playoffs going to come into play here timing wise?

Kupchak: Right now, its not a factor. Like I said, I don’t see the process ending in the next 2-3 weeks. And, it depends how the process goes. We may want to open it up and consider other people. It’s kind of a roundabout way to answer the question but right now that’s all I can answer.

Question: Do other teams openings and hires impact your search?

Kupchak: “No.”

Question: How does knowing that you have the number seven pick compared to a top three pick influence the likelihood you will trade the pick?

Kupchak: “Well it speaks to reason, the higher the pick the more value it has, but you know a 6th pick or 7th pick, which is where we ended up certainly has value. And, we’ll evaluate that between now and the draft and July 1st.”

Question: Is your pick important when you look and building a team from scratch with a handful of guys? Is there extra value in getting young talent that you can control with a rookie contract?

Kupchak: “Well, that’s one of the benefits of having draft picks. There’s a salary scale going forward, you know if it’s a first round pick, you can basically pencil in four years of salary and then if in the fifth year he signs a one-year deal, you can pretty much know that number two. So really you have salary certainty for five years with a first round pick. Second round is a little bit different. So yeah, it’s a factor, but it’s not really that much of a factor with us because we’ve only got one pick this year and we know what that picks going to be, but we still have to fill the roster with seven to eight more players.”

Question: Having gone through this coaching search a couple times is there something you will do differently this time around? (Click next page for the answer)

Next Page: Kupchak On How Kobe Bryant’s Productivity Is Priority In Coaching Search

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About The Author

Serena Winters is the Lead Reporter for Lakers Nation. Besides out-eating the rest of the staff, she's most known for carrying snacks with her to all media events. Make sure to follow Serena on Twitter at @SerenaWinters

Number of Entries : 692
  • Julio

    Lakers FO is in serious trouble of losing all credibility and all respect from their own fan base and the players and media in the NBA.It’s just sad that the Lakers FO can’t figure it out.Fans will be begging to fire Mike Dummy before he even coaches a game it’s really not smart for the Lakers to even interview a loser like Mike Dummy.It’s reaching for straws when you bring in a hated man from a 4 year absence from coaching and someone everyone already hates.It’s doom and gloom as long as the Lakers FO remains in power with the same mistakes and the same cheapskate owner Jimmy Buss.If the Lakers are willing to trade the lottery pick and pay some big money i am pretty sure the Bulls would send Coach Thibs over to the Lakers to start the new era of the Lakers.Or maybe the Lakers FO should stop being cheap and start spending on great players and coaches.

    This is a disgrace and unacceptable to see the Lakers FO mess with the Lakers fan base like this.It’s time for them to realize we are not as stupid as they think we are.Stop insulting the Lakers fans intelligence and start building a winner and a fun team to watch.They just don’t care and that’s very sad.Start caring and have some pride and feel the pressure it’s on you Lakers FO make the smart move and hire a eager young coach from college or a assistant coach that is smart and a winner.

    • kungufgrip

      Julio… you are truly a moron. You should consider becoming a Clippers fan so you can jump on the bandwagon.
      1. The Lakers had an exciting team last year. It’s not the FO fault that the entire team became injured. You could argue that the talent we acquired last season over exceeded expectations.
      2. It doesnt matter what coach you hire until you reload the roster. Who cares about Thibidou. You need players first. The chances of them hiring Dunleavy are slim and none. They just started the interviewing process as they have said 10 billion times.
      3. The Lakers traded Bynum (who basically never played again) for a run at Howard. It didnt work out. The team would do the same trade 10 out of 10 times.
      4. If you expect that FO is just going to spend and we will be a title contender next year you are delusional. Its slightly more complicated than that.
      5. Maybe its time for you to realize that you might be stupider then they are when it comes to operating an NBA franchise. Im fairly certain they intend on building a winner. Its obviously just not going to happen this week.

      • Lakers4life

        1. Lakers were so exciting that their TV ratings drop nearly 50%?
        Exceeded expectations? Worst record in franchise history in LA? Oh my.. what were ur expectations?
        2. Hiring the right coach does matter. It helps you bring in free agents.
        3. Getting D12 of course was great. But you have do part 2 of the equation. Retain the free agent! How do you retain star free agents? Hire the best coach possible perhaps? Hire a coach who knows how to coach big men, not just guards?
        4. I think any hope of contending next year went out the window with getting the 7th pick.
        5. The irony of calling someone else stupid…

        • Nexzen

          You realize he said exciting team that got Injured right? If lebron, wade and bosh were injured, Miami’s tv rating would drop too…

  • jack

    Marcus smart anybody?

  • VillainKing

    Draft Marcus Smart at 7th pick Lakers..

  • Alex

    Ettore Messina

  • Alex

    Also strongly consider a coach from overseas his name is David Blatt.My intuition tells me David Blatt will turn the Lakers around into champions if he is hired.But if Lakers don’t want Messina then David Blatt is the guy to get.I said hire Messina because i figured he is much easier to hire and talked to as he is in the states sometimes and he has already worked for the Lakers in the past as a consultant.But yes David Blatt would be the best coaching hire possible for the Lakers but it will be much harder to get Coach Blatt than Messina.But David Blatt is well worth the trouble and money.

  • balous

    Hire Byron Scott. He has taken two teams deep into the playoffs in New Jersey and New Orleans. I don’t think that he got a fair shake in Cleveland because as soon as he got there, Lebron left. So he was left with a bunch of role players. The Lakers fans love him. He has championship experience. He may even have a bit of influence on Kyrie Irving, who is becoming a free agent soon. Scott may be able to get the most of out Kobe and I am sure that the triangle will not be a part of the offense so that satisfies Jim Buss. He has worked with Jason Kidd, Chris Paul and Kyrie Irving, so he knows what to expect from a good point guard. Honestly, he is the only well known coach out there that would fit.

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