Lakers News: Rick Fox Believes Lakers Will Keep Mike D’Antoni

Lakers News: Rick Fox Believes Lakers Will Keep Mike D’Antoni


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Although Mike D’Antoni has been through a tumultuous two years as head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers, highlighted by the departure of Dwight Howard and going through the worst season in Los Angeles franchise history, he seemingly still has the support of the front office.

No decision has been made on D’Antoni’s future as GM Mitch Kupchak said the team will take some time before evaluating the season. However, now there is speculation that the Lakers are leaning toward keeping the former coach of the year.

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One former Laker also believes that the Lakers will retain D’Antoni this off-season. According to Mark Medina of the L.A. Daily News, Rick Fox believes that the Lakers would have fired D’Antoni already if they were going in that direction:

Do you think Mike D’Antoni will be the Lakers’ head coach next season?

Fox: (laughs). If they were to do something, they would have done it already. He has the confidence of the owners and Mitch Kupchak.

Fox, much like Kupchak, points out that D’Antoni did an admirable job considering all the injuries and believes that another coach wouldn’t have done better:

Some would say he did an admirable job amid the chaos.

But at the end of the day, I don’t know if any coach put in the same position would have been able to do better. They likely would have done the same thing, if not worse.

Under D’Antoni’s direction, the Lakers started the season off strong but as the injuries took their toll, the losses started to pile up. D’Antoni wasn’t given a fair shot considering the injury situation, but posting one of the worst seasons in franchise history is not acceptable.

The decision to retain D’Antoni will play a key role in this upcoming off-season as the team looks to rebuild, and build a squad around the coach’s game plan. Free agents will definitely take into account the Lakers coach, and if D’Antoni returns, the Lakers may say goodbye to long time center Pau Gasol.

D’Antoni still has two years on his contract, the latter being a team option, and only time will tell if he will return. Should the Lakers fire D’Antoni, they will be searching for their fourth head coach in three years after the departure of Phil Jackson.
Lakers D’Antoni And Mitch Kupchak Respond To Kobe Bryant Leaving For France

  • Jim213

    Perhaps they’re waiting for a playoff coach to be dismissed but it may relate more to bad planning. We know Mike isn’t the coach of the future so not being upfront and decisive on matters is stumbling in itself. However, if things don’t change in the short term the masses will need to be patient (wait after the 2016-2017 season) being getting two outs with one pitch (decision).

    • Glenn Derricotte

      Well if they keep waiting, the other teams needing coaches will jump in first

      • Jim213

        If talking about a playoff coach, how so? Many NBA series are just starting their 3rd game. However, tho a long (unlikely) shot if OKC loses series, there’s a 20% chance Scott Brooks could be released.

      • Dino Madness

        Right now Jim Buss is laughing at Time Warner while his counting the Billions he’s going to pilfer from all the poor gullible suckers. Jim Buss is not going to pay for a coach he can’t control, all that Jim Buss is going to do is count his billions and give the finger to Time Warner. So Mike D’Antoni is most likely coming back no matter how much of an epic failure he has been for the Lakers.

    • ra

      MDA isn’t a bad coach, with good players (like on the 2006 Suns). Actually, if running efficiently, his style of basketball is exciting.

      However, Lakers fans have been spoiled by HOF coaches, in addition to players. Pat Riley, PJ, etc. If the Suns had gotten to 2006 Finals and won, we’d be talking differently about MDA. (also, if Nash weren’t injured 2 years ago, things would be ‘way’ different).

      So, which coaches out there would be ‘good Lakers style coaches’, not just ‘good coaches’. Top of my list is … Doc Rivers, but it’s too late for that. Larry Brown, maybe next on my list. SVG. They would make Lakers ball exciting. (yes, all 3 appeared in Finals the last decade, no accident, and against the Lakers! They would be great coaches for the ‘new’ Lakers).

      If 2014-25 is a year in which we don’t expect anything, then maybe we’ll get one of those coaches after the upcoming MDA season. I would have added Pop to the list, but he’s a Spur-for-life, and not a Lakers-style coach.

      • Jim213

        Mike is okay but not for the Lakers. Failing to correct the problems that have troubled the team since the early start of the season speaks volumes.

        • ra

          problems being injuries? What other problems? The Lakers were mostly ‘role player’ types this year, without all their superstars. D’Antoni’s system (run by D’Antoni) needs one or two elite players to ‘fill in the gaps’.

          • Jim213

            You’ve been here long enough to know that for myself most of the accountability falls on FO. No excuses but TO’s, rotations (sitting out players), and not playing/addressing game fundamentals was never resolved during the season.

            No diss to the players but many seem to be at best bench players. To be a starting role player they need to show ability on both sides of the floor on a consistent basis which goes more so defensively if the team has major star players who can put up points every night.

            Injuries IMO likely caused them an average record season but they’ve always lacked effort. Worst LA Lakers season for the franchise. Two season’s with the same issues is more than enough time as things won’t change if he returns for a third.

          • Daryl Peek

            MDA is the scapegoat period. Anything you say that’s not fire D’Antoni will be met with anger.

          • Jim213

            Smh, just plain facts DP. Lack of full roster utilization which you’ve also complained about (opposing your eight man rotation belief from last year (jab)). Not angry just pointing out the FACTS!!#@#@#@!#$@ (pun). But your stance of defending the coach (same as last year) hasn’t changed. SMH

            Give it up DP we both know things aren’t going to improve with Mike. #realtalk

          • Daryl Peek

            Time will tell.

  • Glenn Derricotte

    Either he was told to audition all year, he sucks as a coach and still doesn’t deserve to return. They were not just losing, they were getting blown out! How do you turn that around into a positive?

    • W.E.

      He BLOWS at coaching defense and offense is w.e. He can be a good coach if he had the same type of players back in his Sun’s days. Can’t make adjustments to what he has so he should be relieved for that.

  • independentbynature

    The big Time Warner payout has enabled the F.O. to ignore their fans.But there will be repercussions from the fans for keeping Antoni.Attendance will most certainly be down.Free agents will not be flocking to this dysfunctional franchise,either.Just resign now,Jimmy.You’ve done enough damage already.

  • Matt Williams

    They haven’t even made a decision yet on whether they’re keeping him or not. I agree that they’re taking to long to do that, and if they do make a decision, make the right one(fire him).

  • DirtyHurtz

    Sorry but had to stop at “D’Antoni’s direction, the Lakers started the season off strong” WTH WAS YOU WATCHING 4-5 the first 10 games and they were below 500 first 20 games and only stayed at 500 for about 5 games …. and seriously, asking Rick Fox is pointless he’s only going to give the best media-friendly answer.. he works with the Lakers so he not going make statements against anyone that currently with the organization… so you’re not going to get a real answer not mention he has no effin idea what the Lakers going to do…Shit, Zeus is up there scratching his head trying to figure out what the hell the Lakers are doing…. The reason they haven’t made a move yet is because NO QUALITY COACH IS WANTS TO WORK FOR JIM BUST… think about it

    • LegendInMyMind

      No one in the profession thinks about it the same way as the fans. There’s tons of coaches who would be willing to answer the bell if Jim Buss rang it.

    • Spitfire

      Hahaha! Many have spoken the truth about MDA, from Fox, to Jerry West, to JVG and Mitch Kupchack that he did well and yet all you fools keep on hating and you all think you all are “geniuses” and better than those people. Ha! This really makes me laugh.

      • independentbynature

        Fools like you laugh a lot.Does it help you cope with your inferiority complex?It sure is entertaining.

  • quickster007

    I’m just waiting for Kobe to demand a trade. It’s him or me. The Lakers will trade Kobe to the Knicks for Carmelo Anthony. Dantoni will be horrible everywhere he goes except in Phoenix where Steve Nash was the point guard. Nash is physically falling apart so Dantoni will never be a good fit for the Lakers. Jim Buss is clueless in turning this franchise around. The Lakers are replacing the Clippers when they use to be bad. Time Warner Cable should intervened and say because the Lakers are unwatchable thousands of subscribers has replaced us with the other cable companies. Time Warner should renegotiate their contracts with the Lakers with some clauses like make the playoff in two years and win a championship in 4 years or will withdraw our offer and give it to the Clippers.

    • Spitfire

      That wont happen…lol

    • $20509373

      Even if Kobe demanded a trade who would take on his contract? The Knicks deal is impossible seeing as their cap situation is absolutely horrible.

  • LegendInMyMind

    I was willing to give the Lakers a little while to install the necessary personnel needed to run D’Antoni’s offense, but then he put the final nail in the coffin with his handling of the players this season. It was disgraceful.

    I’m sorry, but it’s not a valid argument to point to the success of other teams as justification for the stubborn failure of your roster, spurred by cluelessly failing to adapt your system to fit your team. Players don’t change. Learn who can do what and utilize it. You’re a goddamn “professional”, Mike D’Antoni. Cut the shit.

  • Glenn Derricotte

    Not only did they lose, they were kicked off national tv several times, dissed by the effin clippers and cant sell out! If that doesnt tell the FO there needs to be a change of regime then they are clueless

  • Glenn Derricotte

    Not only that if you set him up with his type of players and it craps out then you are stuck with a bunch of no defensive gunners

  • Glenn Derricotte

    They keep hanging on like they think the draft hype will change everything?

    • independentbynature

      They don’t want to announce that they are keeping Antoni until after the season ticket renewal deadline has passed.They know what would happen.

      • akakb24

        All the season ticket holders should not buy in this year.. In the end, we the fans control the flow of cash. Maybe that would get the point across.. Byron Scott or George Carl would be OK with me, hell anyone but D’Antoni… All of the injuries has something to do with his pace of the game at which he demands to play.. He totally shafted players like Jordan hill and Chris kaman and pau gasol… No free agent is coming here with him coaching this team. Our front office personnel must be a bunch of fucking idiots for waiting to fire this guy and continue to torture their fans..

        • independentbynature

          Agreed.But,they will still get all that Time Warner money.Time Warner is going to take a bath next year if Antoni is back.Viewership will be down way more than this year was.Antoni already told us we can find a new team to watch and Jimmy must agree.Jeannie will sure have her work cut out for her if they keep Antoni.She’ll be putting up billboards saying “Lakers fans,please come back.”It wont work any better than it did for Dwight,either.

          • akakb24

            Yeah I know, it just makes me sick that they are gonna piss away one of the two years that we have to watch kobe play.. money is no issue with this franchise so winning and the fan base should be priority number one… But obviously it isnt.. I’ll be watching on May 20th and praying for a miracle..

          • independentbynature

            Money was not an issue for Dr. Buss.That may not be true for now.Don’t forget,the first thing Jimmy did was fire the whole scouting department and even the equipment manager when he took over.This isn’t his father’s Lakers.

          • magikwyrkz

            Thank you for your intelligent input.

          • independentbynature

            It’s just my opinion,but you’re welcome.I luv the Lakers and what is going on is just very disappointing.It seems that Lakers MGT. does not care about the fans any more.

        • magikwyrkz

          Couldn’t agree with you more.

  • Rigged4fun

    Let’s face it, attendance and other financials will tell the tale of whether D’Antoni remains. If management feels he can command not only a winning team, but overcome the negative publicity then he’ll remain. If not, he’s gone. You can overlook the results only so long before you have to make a change.

  • Joudon YahRamaat Hope

    The sad part about the Lakers is you will let a great player go but you will keep a coach that doesn’t have it say. I can see alittle improvement in the season but it’s not enough

  • Glenn Derricotte

    They must be planning to keep him….what scenario could they be considering??

    • independentbynature

      Before the shot clock,we used to call it stallball.Season tickets anyone?

      • Glenn Derricotte

        Maybe he was told to have a different starting line up…hill and kaman would have great games and then get benched…there are a few teams in the playoffs with no big stars and they stay competitive…mike brown didnt get this much of a chance….why is dantoni getting a pass??

        • independentbynature

          Jimmy hired Brown over better candidates like Adelman and that was a big mistake.I think Jimmy just doesn’t want to admit to another mistake.His ego is the problem.He’s hoping for a miracle that Antoni will turn things around and redeem his bad judgement in hiring him.

          • Glenn Derricotte

            They are trying to be smarter than everybody who see dantoni as a bad defensive coach….mabe they have another coach to join them or maybe west is coming back

    • Chrmngblly

      I think they foresee another season of heavy loses and they think they might as well hang it all on MDA’s neck. It is the only way to look at it. Then, if things go well, they already have an option on MDA for another year. Otherwise, next year is the year they go for a championship coach and they let MDA slink out of town with all the loses on his back..

  • taviyoung

    Lakers 2014 off season: First they’ll fire D’Antoni and hire Lionel Hollins. Second they’ll draft Julius Randle. Next they’ll use the stretch provision and cut Steve Nash. Then they’ll pick up Eric Bledsoe and Gordon Hayward via free agency, and also re-sign Pau Gasol at a low rate. We will lose Nick Young and Jodie Meeks to free agency. I’ll post the rotation in my next post.

  • taviyoung

    Lakers 2014 rotations:

    C- P. Gasol
    PF- J. Randle
    SF- G. Hayward
    SG- K. Bryant
    PG- E. Bledsoe

    C- J. Hill/ R. Sacre
    PF- J. Hill/ R. Kelly
    SF- X. Henry/ R. Kelly
    SG- K. Bazemore/ X. Henry
    PG- J. Farmar/ K. Marshall

    • Matt Williams

      No Nick Young?

      • taviyoung

        Only if he gives us another hometown discount which I’m pretty sure he won’t.

  • Josh

    Remember when Laker Nation was ECSTATIC that the team record was 9-10? Ecstatic about a sub-.500 record. So why is everyone so angry about the way things turned out after injuries decimated that 9-10 team? You really expect a team that can’t win half its games to do better than this while enduring all those injuries?

  • Carlos

    You mean NO defense DumbToni? Yeah I figured


    The only thing i think that could be a bit logical for the lakers would be too move D’Antoni to offensive coach since they still have to pay him and bring in a great head coach to keep d antoni from having the offense all over the place and a great defensive minded coach to give the lakers a great balance, but then you don’t want to lose Gasol who won 2 chips and who wants to win and dont want to play with d’antoni and also i think Carmelo and Kobe share common goals right now which is winning and contending so if they keep the draft pick they bring someone in to put us back in contenders status but still nobody will come if dantoni stays mannnn his ass needs to go. my team im going with


    • Shannon

      That would be the worst defensive team in the league yet again.

  • BringNBAback2SEA

    Geez, some fans you people are. The Lakers have given you all these titles and playoff appearances, and they hit this rough patch as a result of being screwed (CP3), bad luck, (injuries), and massive egos as to who should get the ball more (Kobe, Dwight, Pau), and you all are bailing and calling for boycotts and calling Kupchak and the FO every name in the book?!? If any organization deserves their fans’ patience, it’s the Lakers.

    • independentbynature

      Like Magic,we don’t believe in Jimmy Buss.There is no reason for optimism as long as Antoni is the coach.It is because we love the Lakers,that this is unacceptable to us.I would question the sincerity of any fan who could accept this debacle Jimmy has engineered.Jimmy does not deserve our patience if he can’t admit and correct his mistakes.Maybe you should ask yourself what kind of fan you are and not worry about our passion.

      • Fred

        He says he’ll step down If he can’t get the job done. I’ll give him 2yrs to get the team back in the right direction. The original poster has a good point.

    • Geddoe

      Hey now man, not all of us laker fans are like that. We are not all unrealistic, delusional, and ridiculously myopic like those mob mentality people you see here, on other sites, or talk radio. Granted, us realistic, rational and patient Laker fans who accept that there are no homerun quick fixes to this team are the minority now. A lot of the fans are now just rabid foaming at the mouth mob who are likely Kobe-first fans and not necessarily Team-first fans

  • Guest

    Here’s facts: Jim Buss isn’t going anywhere, Jeanie Buss won’t stop him, and Mitch Kupchak answers to Jim. The Lakers brand is weakening as a result. You can dream of Kevin Love, Melo, or whoever else. No superstar in this league wants to play for a dysfunctional and poorly run franchise. The only superstar that trust the Buss siblings and thinks they know basketball is Kobe. That’s it.

    As a fan for life I’m pretty much prepared for the dark days. The titanic is sinking and I’m the drunk guy dancing with a chair in the ballroom talking about the good old days. Thank God I was fortunate enough to see 5 championships won. Those memories will serve me well in the Jim Buss era.

  • Rodney Starr

    Rick Fox says that D’Antoni did more than most other coaches in the same situation. Last two seasons he forced his own offense on a team not designed to run it, pissed off all of his big men, and told the fans to find another team. Yep the perfect guy to coach the Lakers! Front office when are you going to say “my bad” and get rid of this guy!

  • KB24


  • Angel Zednum

    M. D’Antoni is a good coach in offense but NOT in DEFENSE….LOOK at the BOBCATS they have not a star player but they have a good defense…

    • Tyson

      They have s much talented and athletic group/core of young players though. That helps a lot on both sides of the ball.

  • Daryl Peek

    Dr. Buss NEVER allowed pundit and fan pressure to sway his choice of FO decisions. Those saying the FO does not care about the fans anymore are either caught up in their emotions, not keeping it real or just looking for a bully pulpit to stand on their soapbox.

  • Shannon

    He’s probably right. Those morons have successfully ruined the Lakers in 1 short year.

    Now the morons who run this website are putting together a #StaySwag campaign. We have officially become the laughing stock of the NBA. You clowns turned the comments off because you know that shit is corny and stupid! Begging NICK YOUNG to stay?? Of all people? Wait until fans of other teams find out. We’ll never hear the end of it. Thanks to everyone with or affiliated with the Lakers for ruining a once great franchise.

  • California King

    D’antoni was dealt a bad hand, so its not really his fault that the team is bad now. However, he frequently makes poor coaching decisions and is clearly not the right coach for the team. Send him packing once we get a better team!

  • independentbynature

    We all know who is “caught up in his own emotions”,and “using the “bully pulpit,” while standing on his “soap box.”Just keeping it real…….Some people like to project what they do onto others.

  • Jed

    Rick Fox is right. Even Popovich with Doc Rivers and Thibs as his assistant would still be a lottery team with this ragtag bunch of D-leaguers. Many fans all year long are delusional and smoking sumthin strong and illegal, thinking that just change the coach and put Byron, Karl, etc etc. and you gave a playoff team in your hands.

  • Robert L. I.

    I don’t see it that way at all. The only thing D’Antoni is really good at is running his players into the ground, hence the most injuries I’ve ever seen in a 2 year span.

    Coach of the Year was a fluke. D’Antoni has a losing record where ever he’s coached.

    And finally he had lousy relationships with his players, especially Bigs. He even dissed Pao, an Allstar and 2 time World Champion. The guy’s an ass. Jim Buss is an ass for hiring him, and because Jim Buss is such an asshole I can see him keeping an average coach with a losing record. I’m sure Jim’s reason for keeping D’Antoni will be because he “likes the way he runs up and down the court waving his hands while bitching at the refs”. That’s the sign of a good coach don’t you know?

  • Jeff in LBC

    So, this year he blamed injuries. Last year, with an All Star cast,
    his excuse was no training camp. Not the right fit. GET OUT!

    • fanoboss12


      • fanoboss12


  • Anthony Armijo

    Its not that the lakers lost as much as they did its how bad they would lose games is y I can’t give mike the benefit of the doubt with this yr with all the injuries. His style of plat might be exciting to watch but it doesn’t compete for championships and no big free agents will want to cm play for hik even if it for the lakers. It will be a mistake to bring mike back next season but being jim buss is calling shots it prob will happen.

  • AnCi3nTALi3n

    Who in the f*** is going to want to come and play for this loser, after the wonderful job he did in NY and now in LA fabulous. I’m sure Carmelo wants to play for him again lmao. You need defense to win games this joker sacrifices that for offense, you can score 100 points a game but you’re not going to win if you’re giving up 110, that sucks for the Laker nation the new standards that the new owner is bringing. But I’m boycotting Laker games it’s too painful to sit and watch that s*** blow in there face all over again. Jim is no Jerry Buss the apple fell far from this tree hey maybe he was adopted, and therefore there is no purple running through those veins that’s why s*** its like it is with him f ing loser!!!!