Mike Brown has had an up-and-down ride in his first season as the Lakers' head coach.
But despite some of the criticism he's faced, the Lake Show will still most likely possess home-court advantage in the first round of the playoffs.
Yet we all know that the pressure is high on any Lakers coach. Expectations must be met, and if there are too many bumps in the road, the coach will get tossed and a fresh face will be brought in.
Brown could surely solidify himself by taking the Lakers on a deep playoff run this season, but there are also some things that could occur which could lead to his firing.
Here are four potential "last straw" scenarios that could lead to Brown's departure.
If undeniable tension between Mike Brown and Kobe Bryant surfaced and became public knowledge, the Lakers wouldn't have much of a choice of what to do next. Kobe's not going anywhere, so Brown would almost surely get the boot.
Bryant didn't criticize Brown for this maneuver, but it has caused many fans to wonder if a rift could ensue.
While some of this analysis is likely the result of the media seeking to extract a headline, there is some warrant to the possibility of developing tension.
Let's say Kobe grows displeased with Brown's tactics come playoff time, and their magnified quandary becomes the source of the Lakers' demise. If such a scenario arose, that could be the final straw that pushes Brown out the door.
If you're an NBA fan, you know the standards are high for the Lakers. If the Lake Show bows out in the first round of the playoffs, losing to a team like Denver, there's a chance that Brown will then not be retained.
With Bryant, Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol and the emerging Ramon Sessions all on this squad, there's no reason for this bunch to endure an early playoff exit. If this did occur, the coach would be the first person where eyes would turn.
With this being Brown's first year with the Lakers, it would do him well to make a statement in the playoffs by getting to the later rounds. On the contrary, it could already lead to his exit if the Lakers prove inept in the postseason's opening series.
While Andrew Bynum is not the marquee name that Kobe Bryant is, he's still an All-Star whose opinion matters.
Bynum has had a breakout year, but it has also been filled with some mystery, including some three-point shots that understandably led to his benching.
Bynum's lacked maturity at times this season, and it wouldn't be surprising if he voiced displeasure towards Brown if the Lakers find turmoil in the playoffs.
If such a reality arises, Brown could quickly find himself on the hot seat. While the truth is that what really needs to take place is some maturity in the heart of Bynum, the actuality of what takes place could feature the Lake Show bidding farewell to Brown.
This is a long shot, but you never know.
But that scenario could never arise if interim New York coach Mike Woodson continues to find success. Then, would Jackson consider looking elsewhere?
If so, perhaps he would give the Lakers another go-around. If he expressed interest, it's certainly reasonable to think the Lakers would hand Jackson the keys and give Brown the door.