Phil Jackson Takes A Jab At Dwight Howard For Leaving Lakers

Phil Jackson Takes A Jab At Dwight Howard For Leaving LakersLuckily for the Los Angeles Lakers, Phil Jackson’s word is still law in Hollywood. Dwight Howard left an unfamiliar, jilted feeling in the hearts of the Lakers and their fans when he opted to join James Harden and the Houston Rockets rather than return to Tinseltown.

‘Left a distaste’

The Lakers aren’t used to being cast aside and coming up empty-handed. That’s just not how it works. Typically, they get what they want. This time they didn’t, and as the Zen Master noted on Twitter, Superman has forever left a tainted imprint on those in Lakerland as the result of his departure.

“Reflection on DHoward’s exodus. He left a distaste in Lakerland The Lakers will be fine. Pau fits MDA’s style of Off-it was about the future”

Jackson’s admittance that Howard left a “distaste” in Los Angeles isn’t nearly as important as what follows: He believes the Lakers are going to be fine.


‘Without Howard’

Pau Gasol is indeed a better fit for Mike D’Antoni’s system than Dwight ever was. Not that he couldn’t have been, but he just never embraced the pick-and-roll aspect of Magic Mike’s offense. Pau presents no such issues. When healthy, Gasol is a premier screen-and-roll option. His ability to knock down shots from the inside out is also something that gives him an advantage over most centers, including Howard.

Provided Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash are still healthy and the team finds some shooters, the Lakers can make some noise in the Western Conference. Without Howard. Just as much as the Rockets can. With Howard.

Which of the two teams will be stronger this coming NBA season — the Lakers or the Rockets? Do you agree with Phil Jackson’s opinion about Dwight Howard’s exodus?

Source: Dan Favale | Bleacher Report

Image: NY Daily News

Los Angeles Lakers Hire Mike D’Antoni As New Coach

Los Angeles Lakers Hire Mike D'Antoni As New CoachIn a surprising turnabout, the Los Angeles Lakers hired Mike D’Antoni as coach late Sunday, passing on another reunion with Phil Jackson, D’Antoni’s agent told Yahoo! Sports.

‘Transition’

The decision came late Sunday, one day after Lakers officials met with Jackson to discuss the possibility of him becoming the franchise’s coach a third time. Jackson, league sources said, was seeking greater personnel control, a relaxed travel schedule and a two-year contract that would pay him at least $10 million a season.

D’Antoni, 61, signed a four-year contract with the Lakers, said his agent, Warren LeGarie. He recently underwent knee surgery and is awaiting his doctors’ clearance as to when he can travel from New York to Los Angeles. Bernie Bickerstaff, who has overseen the Lakers the past two games since Mike Brown was fired, could help ease the transition to D’Antoni. In the middle of a six-game homestand, the Lakers next play Tuesday against the San Antonio Spurs. They are then off until Friday when they face the Phoenix Suns.


‘Seven-seconds-or-less’

D’Antoni’s hiring reunites him with All-Star point guard Steve Nash, who signed with the Lakers in the offseason and has been recently sidelined by a leg injury. D’Antoni coached Nash in Phoenix, where they won at least 50 games for four consecutive seasons and advanced to the Western Conference finals in 2005 and ’06. D’Antoni left the Suns after the 2007-08 season and was quickly hired to coach the New York Knicks. He went 121-167 in three-plus seasons with the Knicks before resigning on March 14 of last season.

D’Antoni’s hiring came two days after the Lakers fired Brown following four losses in the team’s first five games. D’Antoni’s up-tempo, “seven-seconds-or-less” offense made the Suns one of the NBA’s most entertaining – and prolific – teams.

Do you think the Lakers made a good move when they fired Mike Brown and hired Mike D’Antoni? Will the Lakers win their next game?

Source: Yahoo Sports

Image: Complex Sports