Los Angeles Lakers: 10 Coaches To Replace Phil Jackson
After 13 NBA Championships (11 coaching, two playing), Phil Jackson could not have been any more successful in the association.
And, even with the disappointing ending to the 2010-11 season, not every retirement is a storybook ending.
So with that said, L.A. will be looking for someone to fill the shoes at head coach.
Obviously only time will tell, but here are some candidates to satisfy your craving.
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RESUME: Lakers assistant coach since 2004
The man who most are considering to be the heir to Phil Jackson's throne, Brian Shaw would most definitely be an excellent choice.
He's played with Kobe and Derek Fisher and is familiar with the franchise through and through.
The players and fans respect him, and after coaching under Mr. Jackson for six years, his basketball IQ has reached an unprecedented level.
His hire wouldn't really change anything, and for those who don't like change, this is your best candidate.
Jeff Van Gundy
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Through his commentating and analysis, Jeff Van Gundy shows his intelligent basketball mind.
Now, despite the fact that he has no ties to the Lakers, a fresh start would be great, but convincing him is another story.
However, if Van Gundy took the job, his knowledge of the game could bring new life to Kobe's aging legs and rejuvenate those around him.
It would not only be an interesting hire, but a good one at that, especially to follow Phil Jackson.
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RESUME: 1,327-1,011 with 20-plus years with nine different teams, and one NBA Championship (Detroit 2003-04)
To begin, he would have the players' respect from the start with his track record.
Not to mention, that NBA Finals win was over the Lakers, a five-game series win.
That said, the early-season resignation in Charlotte this past season has to be concerning.
And, his "play the right way" philosophy may come as redundant since L.A. does have five rings in seven Finals appearances with Kobe.
The question is how true of a fit he would be, since you know he'd take the job on the spot if offered.
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RESUME: 371-418 with a decade of experience and two NBA Finals appearances with the New Jersey Nets
Despite Byron Scott being the current head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers, if L.A. comes calling there will definitely be some discussion.
As a player, Scott began his career in L.A. so the fans would be appreciative.
However, regardless of whether critics like to believe it or not, the Cavaliers will be improved next season.
Therefore, will Scott be more willing to rebuild with much, much less expectations and pressure?
Or would Laker-land be more appealing despite every decision that he makes being broken down and analyzed in the most intense of ways?
Pick your poison.
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RESUME: 1,210-694 with 20-plus years as a coach, including five NBA Championships as a head coach
A former player and coach for the Los Angles Lakers, Pat Riley would be the best hire based on track record to replace Phil Jackson.
Also, if Kobe is to go out on top in John Elway-esque fashion, Riley has to be the man for the job.
All of these other coaches would definitely help L.A. in the long run, but with another Hall of Famer on the sidelines you can't ask for much more in the short term.
So with that said, it's now more based on how Mitch Kupchak and Jerry Buss want to approach this.
Riley is their best chance at winning another Kobe title in the next few years, but if they go long term, then Laker fans may have to be a bit more patient.
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RESUME: 945-616 with 20 years of experience and two NBA Finals appearance with the Portland Trail Blazers
Okay, so the past few seasons the Houston Rockets have underperformed with Rick Adelman as head coach.
But Adelman did about as much as he could have because of Yao Ming's and Tracy McGrady's injuries.
Not to mention, defensive standout Shane Battier is now in Memphis.
However, Adelman is now a free agent and should be considered to replace Phil Jackson, as he does have the experience and success to lead L.A. back to the NBA Finals.
RESUME: 272-138 in five seasons as the Cavaliers head coach, with one NBA Finals appearance.
Might be a bit of a stretch since there are more appealing candidates.
However, if L.A. wants to get back to the top of the Western Conference, Mike Brown would help the defense significantly.
Now, although the Lakers D is already pretty solid (finished eighth in points allowed), Brown could take them into the top five if not higher.
Offensively though, he's not a great mind so that may be a concern.
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RESUME: Lakers assistant coach from 1999-2004, and again from 2006-present
It would be a surprise if Jim Cleamons gets selected over Brian Shaw, but he does have excellent experience as an assistant.
While Jackson was in Chicago, Cleamons served as an assistant there and then met up with Jackson again in L.A.
His knowledge of the triangle offense is like the back of his hand, and he also has brief experience as a head coach with the Dallas Mavericks.
In addition, he filled in for Jackson when he was absent in 2003.
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RESUME: 56-145, current Timberwolves head coach and former assistant under Phil Jackson
Say what you want about what Kurt Rambis has done with the Timberwolves, but the players in L.A. know what he's capable of.
And, kind of like the University of Michigan football program (how they usually hire a "Michigan man"), L.A. seems to be heading in that direction as well.
Rambis (a Laker man, former player and assistant), would be good because he'd be committed to maintaining the tradition in L.A.
Additionally, it is a much more glorified position than coaching in Minnesota (sorry T-Wolves fans).
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RESUME: 458-429 with 11 years of coaching experience and five playoff appearances
He's led Portland to three consecutive playoff appearances and did it while dealing with a numerous amount of injuries.
That said, he did sign a contract extension, but we all know that could change come this summer.
If L.A. decides that it wants him, it will get him. Period.
That position is arguably the most prestigious in the NBA next to the Celtics', so McMillan would definitely be open to moving southward.