After three head coach-less months, the Los Angeles Lakers have reportedly named the front man that almost everyone expected.
ESPN's Ramona Shelburne reported Saturday that Byron Scott is the next head coach in L.A.:
The former NBA standout is returning to Los Angeles after a decorated 11-year playing career there, winning three titles in his time with the franchise. He's been the front-runner throughout much of the Lakers' slow-paced coaching search, and Kobe Bryant got his wish in seeing his former teammate named coach.
The move is set to be announced with a Monday presser, per Los Angeles Daily News' Mark Medina:
Although Scott has a Laker pedigree, he's far from the only former player to take over, as ESPN's Arash Markazi noted:
ESPN Stats & Information summed up both sides—the good and the bad—of Scott's resume:
Twitter ignited with all sorts of reactions, including this one from NBA writer Seerat Sohi:
It literally took months for Scott to the Lakers to become finalized, sparking this tweet from Charlotte Observer's Rick Bonnell:
CBS Sports' Tony Moss dug hard for a sweet statistic regarding Bryant and his new coach:
Russ Bengtson of Complex seems more impressed with the hire than some of L.A.'s free-agency moves:
Sports On Earth's Sean Highkin jabbed that the coaching situation in L.A. might look a bit different if Kevin Durant hits free agency in 2016:
B/R's Mike Freeman expects Scott to follow in the shoes of recently fired Mike D'Antoni and Mike Brown:
Not all of the reactions were negative, as UK End Zone's Ollie Connolly was quite impressed with the move:
Lakers Nation reporter Serena Winters posted a video report on the news:
Scott hasn't gotten a great rap in the league recently after a woeful stint with the Cleveland Cavaliers, but he has proven to be a great motivator and relates to his players. He took the New Jersey Nets to back-to-back NBA Finals in 2002 and 2003, along with some success with Chris Paul and the New Orleans Hornets.
L.A. kept all of its coaching options open entering free agency, but Scott is the obvious choice given how it all unfolded. He’ll be able to gain respect in a locker room that hasn’t had much for its coaches as of late.
With the Lakers far from contending for a championship, Scott’s arrival may allow for a strong culture to be created—in which case, the 53-year-old could avoid following his predecessors with an early exit even if there’s little immediate success.
His overall coaching record isn’t the most desirable, in large part because Scott hasn’t backed down from tough situations, like trying to rebuild the Cavs.
While the Lakers aren’t in a rebuild, they’re certainly far from stable. A coach like Scott just might bring the coaching stability that L.A. has lacked since Phil Jackson stepped down.