Lakers Nation Roundtable: Byron Scott The Right Choice? Reviewed by Momizat on . [new_royalslider id="309"] After going through the entire free agency period without a head coach, the Los Angeles Lakers finally announced their guy in former [new_royalslider id="309"] After going through the entire free agency period without a head coach, the Los Angeles Lakers finally announced their guy in former Rating: 0
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Lakers Nation Roundtable: Byron Scott The Right Choice?

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After going through the entire free agency period without a head coach, the Los Angeles Lakers finally announced their guy in former player and three-time NBA Champion, Byron Scott.

Not only has Scott experienced great success with the Lakers as a player, but he has also been relatively successful since venturing into coaching. He led the New Jersey Nets to back-to-back NBA Finals appearances in 2002 and 2003, and was named NBA Coach of the Year in 2008 with the New Orleans Hornets.

Scott provides the Lakers with a rare combination as not only is he a successful NBA coach, but he also understands what it means to be a member of the Lakers — something he will be able to pass on to the younger players on the roster.

He also has a very good relationship with Kobe Bryant as he was Kobe’s mentor when the latter first entered the league in 1996. He should be able to communicate with Kobe about what he needs to be done, and there is mutual respect between the two. But does all this mean he was the best person for the job?

There were a number of extremely successful coaches available when the Lakers job first became open. Big names like Stan and Jeff Van Gundy, established veterans like George Karl and Lionel Hollins, and intriguing newcomers like Steve Kerr and Derek Fisher were all possibilities.

Some got interviews and some didn’t. Most are coaching somewhere else in the NBA this season. Perhaps one of them could have been on the Lakers bench had they pushed earlier. But in the end, the Lakers have their guy in Byron Scott.

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So we asked our panel of experts, do you believe Byron Scott was the best choice as Lakers head coach? This is what they had to say:

Kevin Chan (@Kevin_Cruiser): The Lakers front office struck out on their previous two head coaching hires. Both Mike Brown and Mike D’Antoni were terminated before their contract’s end. Will this be strike three? I feel like the Lakers made an uninspired, but very safe, fan-friendly hire.

Scott had the support of former Lakers and current players on the roster, namely Kobe Bryant. Most longtime Lakers fans are also familiar with Scott and comfortable with him at the helm. That Byron Scott would be the next Lakers head coach was the worst kept secret of the off-season.

However, this was a vapid coaching search – at one point they interviewed Mike Dunleavy. I mean come on, really? Clearly the Lakers weren’t willing to take calculated risks to nab an up-and-coming coach. Instead they played it safe and picked the low hanging fruit.

Nothing against Byron Scott – I loved him as a player and I respect the limited success he had in his prior stints with the Nets and Hornets. But to a man, if you talk to level-headed NBA fans, they will tell you what most people know to be true: Byron Scott is an average head coach. He has very limited upside, if any. The Lakers are getting a known quantity who will hopefully be better than his two predecessors.

Taking a look at a few recent coaching hires shows me that teams are more creative than the Lakers when it comes to hiring. The Cavs went overseas and plucked David Blatt from the Euroleague and the Spurs hired a very promising assistant coach, Ettore Messina from CSKA Moscow. Both Blatt and Messina won Euroleague Championships and enjoyed sustained success.

Looking back to last year, I really liked the Celtics bringing up Brad Stevens from Butler. Also it was smart of the Hawks and 76ers to hire from Gregg Popovich’s assistant coaching stable. These teams took calculated risks to hire a coach with significant upside.

Meanwhile the Lakers played it safe when they could’ve afforded to take some risk given that they’re in rebuilding mode and the team isn’t expected to contend immediately. On the whole this was a very ho hum coaching hire for the Lakers and only time will tell if they made the right decision.

Russell Valenzuela (@RussVal4): I have long believed that the Lakers weren’t going to win a title in two years Kobe Bryant has left on his contract. With that said, when the team entered the off-season without a coach, they still needed to find someone that demanded Bryant’s respect.

Anyone that came in would have to establish a relationship with Bryant in order to properly coach the rest of the team. To me, that was always Byron Scott’s greatest strength as a candidate.

Sure, there were coaches that might have had a better record than Scott. Let’s not forget that both Mike Brown and Mike D’Antoni were considered to be good coaches before their time with the Lakers. A big part of their failures was the inability to get on the same page as Bryant.

The added bonus is that Scott had been a huge part of the Lakers franchise in the past and knows what it means to be a Laker. With the team going through a transitional phase, it’s important for players on the team to continue to pride themselves on being a member of this prestigious franchise. Having Scott teach and show them is ideal in my eyes.

Scott is the perfect face to lead the Lakers in the near future as they look to rebuild themselves into contenders again. It’s not going to happen right away, but Scott will help guide them into the right direction.

Ryan Ward (@Lakers_Examiner): With Lionel Hollins no longer an option, Byron Scott was the best choice for the Los Angeles Lakers.

A lot of notable coaches were mentioned as candidates for the job like Mark Jackson, John Calipari and Mike Krzyzewski, but it seems as though the team had Scott pegged as Mike D’Antoni’s successor all along.

Scott brings a new dynamic to the team with an emphasis on accountability on the defensive side of the floor. D’Antoni didn’t make much of an effort last year to improve defensively which was something he was highly criticized for during his time in Los Angeles.

Scott also brings the kind of love and passion for the franchise that has been sorely lacking in Los Angeles over the past few years. Phil Jackson wasn’t one to show his emotion or passion for the purple and gold, but we all knew it was there.

Scott on the other hand will likely be more vocal while running the team with a true desire to see the team to succeed continuing the legacy as one of the best organizations in professional sports.

Will Scott being the answer to all the Lakers problems? No. Not in the slightest. Will Scott help improve the team moving forward and change the culture in the process? Yes. I believe Scott will shake things up with Kobe backing up his former teammate and current coach.

It’ll be interesting to see how things pan out over the next three years before Scott’s team option in year four. Scott will have the time to get the team back on track, but it remains to be seen if he’ll been able to pull it off before the Lakers brass decides to make another change at head coach.

Nathan Kim (@Kimchiz): Byron Scott was the best choice for the Lakers out of the coaches available.

With many potential candidates getting hired (Lionel Hollins, Derek Fisher, Stan Van Gundy, and Steve Kerr) the Lakers were left with only a few head coaches they could consider. Furthermore, after the horrible legacy that Mike D’Antoni left, the Lakers needed a big name that would satisfy the fans.

There were really only two coaches that the Lakers could even consider, Byron Scott and George Karl. George Karl is a fantastic coach. He even won the NBA Coach of the Year award in 2013, the last season that he coached since he was relieved by the Denver Nuggets. He has won nearly 60 percent of his games in shi career, and has proven that he can coach.

One downside to Karl however, is his health. Karl has a history with cancer and although he is healthy now, the potential for a health issue may have deterred the Lakers from choosing Karl.

Byron Scott has had a decent coaching career, even making it to the NBA Finals in two consecutive years and winning Coach of the Year in 2008. The Lakers however didn’t choose Byron because of his numbers, per se, but rather because of his history with the Lakers organization. Scott is a recognizable face to Laker fans and is the perfect choice to progress the team and to satisfy Laker fans.

Suki Thind (@TheRealSuki): Given the Lakers’ current roster, I do believe he was the best choice. Byron Scott will provide this rebuilding team with structure and poise.

Additionally, he’ll be given the benefit of the doubt by fans and media, as he’s a former Laker who bleeds purple and gold as he showed during his emotional introductory press conference.

He also has a solid rapport with Kobe Bryant, which never hurts. We’ll see how it all unfolds as the season plays out, but for now it certainly seems like the most wise choice.
Lakers Introduce Byron Scott (Part 4): One Promise To Lakers Fans

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About The Author

Corey is currently a full-time staff writer for Lakers Nation. He is a passionate follower of the Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Cowboys and can usually be seen arguing the merits of Kobe Bryant or cursing the decisions of Jerry Jones. He is also a former producer and associate producer for Sirius XM Sports Radio. Follow him on twitter @TheeCoreyH

Number of Entries : 883
  • Paytc

    I just want to be one of the first to welcome Byron Scott as the new Laker’s coach. I am optimistic as always about the up coming season.

    Cheers to Byron Scott, and Kobe’s successful return.

    Go Lakers !

  • kiko

    Lakers should try working out to sign add sf Beasley, c ekpe udoh both Andray Blatche and waive sacre and add Dante Cunningham

    • trllit

      Dante Cunningham just got arrested twice for domestic assault, unless you want the Lakers to pay for his legsl fees, otherwise he ain’t playing next season cause no other teams will sign him. But I bet you really look up to guys that beat up their spouse, don’t you?

      • kiko

        so what Dante Cunningham just got arrested twice for domestic assault and how to be related to basketball good sign to Dante Cunningham good players the problems in life what effect to LA Lakers ??

  • Lionel


    • http://www.foxhilldesign.com Josh


      • Lionel

        Some fan suggested waiving Sacre.I keep hearing bloggers saying waive Sacre and all this stuff.I don’t care either way.Sarcasm on my part.

        • http://www.foxhilldesign.com Josh

          Well, I’ll go on the record as saying I care. Sacre can be a solid backup for years to come. He needs to stay and be part of the rotation.

          • Lionel

            You are basing this off what?Please tell me what Sacre has did that makes you think he can help out a championship organization like the Lakers?How has he impacted the win loss record?I just think he needs to prove much more before i sit here and praise him and claim he should stay for many years.

          • http://www.foxhilldesign.com Josh

            Excuse me while I dig into my post history and regurgitate some numbers for you…

            Statistical growth from 2012-13 to 2013-14…
            Games played +103%
            Games started +333%
            Minutes per game +167%
            FGA/36 minutes +16%
            FG% +27%
            FTA/36 minutes +55%
            FT% +7%
            Offensive reb/36 +41%
            Defensive reb/36 +30%
            Assists/36 +55%
            Turnovers/36 -11%
            Fouls/36 -34%

            The only stat where he declined was an 11% dip in blocks per 36. I call that “exponential growth.” I’d challenge you to find any player in the history of the league with that much improvement in every single statistical category from one season to the next. The dude clearly puts in the work, and it shows. I was his biggest critic a year ago, but he’s earned his place and has a long career ahead of him in the NBA. I’m not saying he will ever be an all-star, and he probably will never be an 82-game starter, but he’s is MUCH BETTER than most people give him credit for.

          • Lionel

            I am sure he is a very nice guy and a cheerleader on the bench.But in a real meaningful situation i have yet to see the will to win and fight for championship from him.

            He seems like he is unorthodox he doesn’t look like the prototypical player at his position,he comes off as the 60th pick getting minutes because the team needs a cheap contract player to get some minutes since nobody else is worth a damn at his position on this team roster.

            But hey i give him credit for improving his game but i am not sold on him as he reminds me of Antonio Harvey way too much.I am not sold on Sacre.

          • http://www.foxhilldesign.com Josh

            He’s obviously not a guy to lead a team to a championship. It’s impossible to have a 9-man rotation of guys able to lead a championship team. He’s a big body. He’s always in the right spot. He’s developed a nice hook shot. He can contribute meaningful minutes to any team. 60th picks rarely play in the NBA. He (and Isaiah Thomas) are NOT typical 60th picks. He’s light years better than many #1 picks.

          • Lionel

            Where do you project Robert Sacre in comparison to any centers in the NBA?What’s his ceiling tbh?He likely to be the next who?

          • http://www.foxhilldesign.com Josh

            That’s tough. I don’t watch other teams nearly the same way I watch the Lakers. I’ve heard someone say Gortat–maybe that’s his ceiling if he continue to work and improve the way he has so far. I thought maybe Tiago Splitter in the sense that both guys are not really that skilled but they understand their roles and do a lot of the little things well.

          • Nalin Shukla

            I never heard anybody defend sacre..do you know him personally?

          • Jarvis Balla Mayne

            LOL Sac of shit.

          • http://www.foxhilldesign.com Josh

            No, I believe in hard work. His rookie season, he had no business ever entering games. He worked hard and got better.

          • Nalin Shukla

            He’s definitely a hard worker but he’s not gonna equal to wins which we’re desperate for..he should consider a job in construction or carpentry like Jesus

          • Jarvis Balla Mayne

            Comparing Sac of shit to Gortat is delusional.Sacre compared to Splitter is a far fetched dream.You must be his brother lol?Sacre is a scrub that belongs in the rec league not NBA.He is awful and a big stiff with no serious moves and nobody can take him serious at all he is the worst player on the 27-55 Lakers.You kept defending Sac of shit why?Do you know him personally?????

          • http://www.foxhilldesign.com Josh

            He was the worst center on the team and still is, although he’s also the ONLY center on the team. There were several players who were worse than Sacre last year–Shawne Williams, Kendall Marshall, MarShon Brooks, Elias Harris, Manny Harris, Wesley Johnson (3 out of every 4 games).

          • Lionel

            Hell nah son.You are dumb as shit ban yourself from ever posting again idiot.Robert Sacre is a piece of shit,he sucks,seriously how stupid and how big of a Lakers homer are you to compare a 5ppg and 3.9 REB scrub to the top 10 center Marcin Gortat?You owe Marcin Gortat a apology for disgracing him by putting Robert Sacre in the same sentence in a comparing way..GTFO here that was the worst post ever and the worst comparison ever.I am ashamed of dumb Lakers fans like you,giving Lakers fans a bad name as a stupid fan base it’s comments like the ones you made that make everyone hate the Lakers fans.Comparing Sacre to Splitter lol STOP IT.Splitter is way above that Sacre loser.

          • billy

            Good Job Josh, I can’t not believe the ignorance portrayed by people who post comments, Sacre works his but off, gets paid nothing, has a great attitude and the respect of his teammates. Seriously, I feel so bad for the future of our country when I read posts on sport’s blog, makes us look like a country of thugs and idiots….oh wait…

          • billy

            Of course now I look like an idiot with my double negative, where is the edit button?

          • Nalin Shukla

            I feel bad for people who judge the country by comments on sports blogs

          • http://www.foxhilldesign.com Josh

            You asked me about Sacre’s ceiling. If he keeps working, I think he could be as good as those guys. Gortat averaged 4ppg and 4.5 reb in his second season.

          • Nalin Shukla

            His ceiling is in the basement

  • Jarvis Balla Mayne

    Lakers Trade Steve Nash+Robert Sacre+Draft Picks For Eric Bledsoe.DO IT MITCH!

    • Nalin Shukla


      • Jarvis Balla Mayne

        True man they won’t do it lol.I just wanted to poop on the Suns with crappy trade offer they will reject lol.Nah but on the real they will lose Bledsoe for nothing in 2015 if they don’t lock him to a long term deal.He becomes a unrestricted free agent next season if he never agrees to a long term deal with the Suns.So i figured they get draft picks and there hometown hero Nash and some big dude Sacre and that’s better than losing Bledsoe for nothing by scoring a 2015 Houston firs rounder and scoring the protection being taken off the Lakers pick traded to them also getting a 2015 second round pick and the Lakers 2017 second round pick and the 2019 first round pick plus $3 million dollars cash.

  • Gary

    Did the Lakers sign Michael Beasley yet?

  • Ralph

    Julius Randle has the most to prove since he is a lottery first for LAL since 82.

    • http://www.foxhilldesign.com Josh

      Highest pick since 82. Eddie Jones and Andrew Bynum were lottery picks. Maybe George Lynch, too?

      • Ralph

        Pick #7 Julius Randle.Those guys were later than #7.Look it up.

        • http://www.foxhilldesign.com Josh

          They were later than #7, but they were all lottery picks. You said Randle was the first lottery pick since 82.

          • Ralph

            Okay fine highest Lakers selection since 82.Sounds better.

  • Petros

    RealGM Wiretap
    Basketball news gathered from around the net.

    Heat Sign Shawne Williams

    Aug 01, 2014 1:16 PM EDT

    The Miami Heat have signed forward Shawne Williams.

    Williams, a six-year NBA veteran, has appeared in 251 career regular season games (36 starts) averaging 5.7 points, 3.1 rebounds and 17.1 minutes while shooting 40.3 percent from the field, 33.3 percent from three-point range and 73.3 percent from the foul line.

    Williams split the 2013-14 season with the Los Angeles Lakers and their D-League affiliate, the D-Fenders.

    Via RealGM Staff Report

    • Badazztj12

      Shawne was decent but just too inconsistent on his 3 point shot.

      • Kevin

        Good defense but lacking offense.Heat?

      • http://www.foxhilldesign.com Josh

        Shawne was TURRIBLE! It’s often one player can be cut from the same team twice in one season.

  • Petros

    Lakers should sign Michael Beasley fast.

  • Kevin

    Have the Lakers signed Jordan Clarkson yet?

    • http://www.foxhilldesign.com Josh

      Good question. I don’t think so.

  • Me You Lakers

    Have the Lakers hired any assistant coaches?My wish list Gary Payton,Dave Miller,Michael Cooper,Robert Horry,Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

  • Baron

    I think Michael Beasley has talent and Byron Scott wants to bring it out of him.

  • Alfredo

    Reddit Survey Shows Which NBA Teams Are the Most Hated in the United States
    By Kyle Newport, Featured Columnist Aug 1, 2014

    The results of a Reddit survey are in, and we now know which NBA team is the most hated in each state.

    There aren’t too many surprises on the map. Given their recent success, the Miami Heat are hated in more states (24) than any other team. And of course, Ohio was counted among the Heat-hating states.

    The state of Washington still isn’t a fan of the Oklahoma City Thunder, obviously. After all, the Seattle SuperSonics left town and went to Oklahoma City in 2008.

    The Los Angeles Lakers came in a close second to Miami after being voted the most hated team in 21 states. Even California voted the Lakers its most hated team, with the Los Angeles Clippers and the Heat following closely behind.

    It’s tough to see in the big map, but Delaware is the only state that picked the Cleveland Cavaliers as its most hated team.

    PER B/R

  • Warren Sartor Carey

    I am so proud of my homeboy! He deserves this promotion and so does the Laker organization. We should win almost 50 games this coming season because of Scott’s focus on defense. He is relentless and he is a product of South Central!

  • rik

    western conference next year
    1. Spurs 57-25
    2. Thunder 54-28
    3. Clippers 53-29
    4. Warriors 51-31
    5. Mavericks 49-33
    6. Grizzlies 48-34
    7. Trailblazers 46-36
    8. Lakers 45-37
    9. Rockets 43-39
    10. Suns 42-40
    11. Pelicans 41-41
    12. Nuggets 40-42
    13. T-wolves 32-50
    14. Kings 26-56
    15. jazz 16-66

    • kb24

      dude,you are judging with our current roster,why not judge for improvements,mitch has blue chip in his shoulder,wait and see,and the lac wont go into the top3 since we are back
      OKC(durant nearing his prime)
      PORT(blake and kaman are huge upgrade)
      lal/dal(addition of parsons isnt that huge though, splash but not much,dirk,pars and ellis with felton and chandler playing D and loss of aircanada and the matrix for parsons isntmuch a dfference
      hou( u know y)
      gsw(new coach and system triangle)

  • Realistic Laker Fan

    We will have to wait and see.

  • kb24

    how about swap kelly to phx for a future 2nd rounder then add beasley or okafor since majrority of our players will be traded or part of 3 team deals(nash,lin,kelly,hill,wes)

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