Los Angeles Lakers: Should They Fire Mike D'Antoni?

Michael RiosCorrespondent IDecember 12, 2012

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 20:  Head coach Mike D'Antoni of the Los Angeles Lakers reacts in the game against the Brooklyn Nets at Staples Center on November 20, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. The Lakers won 95-90.   NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Mike Brown was given five games to show what he could do with this team. In those five games, he accumulated a record of 1-4. He was fired. 

Mike D'Antoni was brought into the Lakers right afterward to turn things around. In his 12 games, his record stands at 4-8. 

Should he be fired next?

It's no secret that the Lakers expect perfection. That was a bit of an understatement coming in to this particular season. After 22 games, the Lakers have accumulated a record of 9-13 after a humiliating loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers

Granted, the Lakers don't have a healthy Pau Gasol, and Steve Nash has been out for over a month. The fact of the matter is that the injuries haven't really been kind to the Lake Show.

But when a coach has a reputation for offensive execution, you would expect something a little more than what fans have seen thus far. The Lakers still haven't been as consistent with the D'Antoni offense as most would have expected. 

Even prior to assuming the helm, D'Antoni expected the team to average 110 to 115 points per games. 

The Lakers have crossed the 110 mark just three times since D'Antoni came in. One of those times resulted in a loss.  

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But stats and records aside, his coaching choices haven't been superb either. One could easily make the argument that allowing Dwight Howard to play in the fourth quarter against the Houston Rockets led to their demise. And playing Pau Gasol outside of the post wasn't the wisest of moves. As we all know, Gasol is a back-to-the-basket player who thrives in the paint. 

It's not certain when Mike D'Antoni will have a healthy Steve Nash back on his team. His offense is dictated on having a true point guard. We saw that in Phoenix and we saw that in New York with Jeremy Lin. 

But therein lies the problem: D'Antoni's system is too reliant on one specific player. The Lakers have six all-stars. There is absolutely no need to put so much pressure on just one guy, especially when that guy is 38 years old. 

Also, this is a coach who likes to run. But this is a team that has never been and will never be a fast-break team. So how does D'Antoni expect his system to work? 

If the Lakers fire D'Antoni, what should they do?

Contacting Phil Jackson again would be an insult to him. The best option would be Bernie Bickerstaff. Out of all three head coaches this past season, Bickerstaff has accumulated the most wins. He is also (technically) the Lakers' all-time leader in winning percentage with a 4-1 record.

D'Antoni hasn't been working with the Lakers so far. Maybe he still needs more time to adjust. But with an aging team, time is not very abundant. 

D'Antoni, you're on the hot seat.