5 Reasons Why Los Angeles Lakers Must Fire Mike D’Antoni
Coming Up Short
The Los Angeles Lakers have seen better days and better seasons. Currently with a record of 14-23, the Lakers find themselves without Kobe Bryant and without a playoff spot. Although there is still time to turn this season around, it looks like it might be too late for the former “Golden Boys” of L.A.
Handing over the reins to the little brother Los Angeles Clippers, the Lakers have been on a downward spiral since losing Bryant shortly after his return from a torn Achilles tendon. The poor results thus far this season leave fans calling for head coach Mike D’Antoni's head -- a similar outcry the coach has heard before.
Honestly, can you blame Laker fans for their frustration? Ever since becoming head coach last season, D’Antoni has been the victim of media scrutiny due to his poor results. Last season saw the loss of Bryant and a first round playoff exit. All events eventually accumulated into Dwight Howard ditching the Lakers and their current predicament.
With no guarantee on Bryant’s return or how much he has left in his career, Los Angeles has a lot riding on this offseason. The 2014 free agency market has the possibility of being a big deal with all three members of the “Big 3” having opt-out options and Carmelo Anthony becoming an unrestricted free-agent. Many believe that the Lakers will go after Anthony relatively hard, so it makes all the more sense to fire D’Antoni.
As playoff hopes slowly slip away for the Lakers, they should turn to the future aka this summer. Fire D’Antoni and make yourself attractive for all of the free agents who will become available. The window is closing on Bryant, so Los Angeles will be looking to make a championship run now while solidifying their future. Here are five reasons why the future is not with D’Antoni, and the Lakers must fire him now.
Shane Phillips is an NBA Writer for RantSports.com. Follow Shane on Twitter @Smphil01, "Like" him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.
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5. Partially to Blame for Dwight Howard
It was no secret that Dwight Howard and D’Antoni had their differences during the 7-footer’s short stint in the City of Angels. At times, Howard would publicly complain about his displeasure with the head coach’s offensive strategy. There is no question that D’Antoni’s presence played a role in Howard’s decision to leave L.A., but he remains the head coach and the Lakers continue to plummet.
4. Philosophy Does Not Fit
D’Antoni’s “run ‘n’ gun” style offense worked well when he was with the Phoenix Suns, but that type of philosophy requires the correct personnel. The Lakers are anything but a fast-paced team with aging players like Nash, Bryant and Gasol. D’Antoni’s strategy has seen success with the correct players, but the Knicks were not a good fit for it and neither is Los Angeles.
3. Won't Attract Carmelo Anthony
The summer of 2014 will prove to be an important one for a team like the Lakers. The 2013-14 season continues to slip through the historic organization’s fingers, and Bryant is not getting any younger. Los Angeles is rumored to be a front-runner in obtaining a big free agent such as Carmelo Anthony. D’Antoni and Anthony have an unpleasant history from when D’Antoni failed miserably as the Knicks head coach.
If this season continues to be the disaster that it is, the Lakers need to seriously contemplate firing D’Antoni in an attempt to signify a deep interest in Anthony. Keeping D’Antoni after last season led to L.A. losing Howard. Who’s to say that D’Antoni’s presence couldn’t scare off another superstar?
2. Can't Massage Egos
D’Antoni’s time as Knicks head coach was marred by his inability to massage egos in a hostile market. New York is no easy market to make a living in and neither is Los Angeles. The Lakers' coaching position is one of the most coveted positions in all of sports. The rich, success filled history behind the head coaching spot has been written by greats such as Pat Riley, Rudy Tomjanovich and Phil Jackson. All of them had to deal with famous egos during their terrific careers.
Unfortunately, D’Antoni isn’t one to massage egos well enough to create success. He has had his fair share of issues with big names like Byrant, Howard, Anthony and Amare Stoudemire. All of them proved to be too great to be controlled by D’Antoni.
1. Will Not Win a Championship
Besides some great success in the early 2000s for D’Antoni, the head coach has gone through a rough patch in his career. He made some deep runs with a sleek and quick Suns team, but the Finals have always eluded him. D’Antoni’s coaching strategy and philosophy is flawed. His fast-paced, high-powered offense does not translate well into every roster. Due to his questionable ways, I believe it is safe to say D’Antoni will never win an NBA Championship.