I saw this coming 500 days ago.
Mike Brown had not the moxie to make it happen. Not in L.A. Not in Cleveland. Probably not anywhere. He’s a nice guy. A hard worker. A good basketball mind. A coach who understands that defense wins championships, but c’mon. He’s like the Wade Phillips of the NBA. He just can’t run a team.
After starting a dismal 1-4, the Lakers brass is no longer interested in Brown’s attempt at teaching this team Princeton’s offense.
A former baller, I love and respect the Princeton way. There is nothing more frustrating than playing a team that is adept at reading each other and embarrassing you at times with a barrage of back cuts and constant movement. But. Such an offense is based on chemistry. Something that this Lakers team doesn’t have.
Steve Nash doesn’t know how to read Dwight Howard. He doesn’t understand his tendencies. He doesn’t know Kobe Bryant much more than being a former opponent. It was a novel concept, but you would never put a thoroughbred in a horse pageant. Mike Brown needed to let these horses run.
In all fairness, Nash hasn’t been on the floor a whole heckuva lot in the first 5 games, but these red flags were waving early in the preseason.
Any NBA point guard could play the Princeton offense, if they understand how to take care of the ball. But this is the NBA, with a 24 second shot clock and your GM just went out and got you Nash. If you’re Brown, you play to his strengths, which is Nash playing to the strengths of the 4 guys he’s surrounded by. Brown didn’t. Brown is gone.
This move had to happen.
Having been said, where will the Lakers turn for a coach? Phil Jackson is highly unlikely, but the lure of winning championships for competitors never gets old. The pursuit is always new, because it’s always different.
Bernie Bickerstaff will coach the team tonight vs. the Golden State Warriors.