Mike Brown did not get a fair shake from the Lakers. Even as I write this, I realize that he never should have been given the job in the first place. He was not yet ready to be on The Big Stage. All coaches know and understand the fundamentals and the strategies of the game of basketball. However, that is only a part of the job. The other part is managing and motivating the players on your team. In my opinion, that is what is still lacking from Brown's repertoire.
First of all, any successful coach has to have complete control of his team. For any coach of the Lakers, this is an especially difficult task, and since Kobe Bryant already has 75 percent of the Control. He has long ago forgotten that he is paid handsomely to be a basketball player. He thinks that he understands how to run a team, and that is what he is trying to do, but he does not know how to do that.
I think that the best possible coach for the Lakers would be Byron Scott. However, he is currently coaching the Cleveland Cavaliers, Mike Brown's old team, and he is not available. Scott understands what is required of either a coach or a player in Los Angeles. He also has the credibility of having championship rings of his own. When he coached the New Jersey Nets, his talent deprived teams took the talent laden Lakers to two straight NBA Finals.
If Scott was coaching the Lakers, he, not Kobe Bryant, would run the team. Scott carries himself with a certain amount of dignity, and he is tough and cool in pressure feels situations. He would've been my choice.
Since Scott was not available, in my opinion, Nate McMillan was the next best choice. He had coached the Portland Trail Blazers for several years. During his tenure there, the Blazers had a winning record over the Phil Jackson led Lakers. McMillan's teams always played hard, and they were difficult to beat. In the last few years, Greg Oden and Brandon Roy, his two superstars, both suffered serious injuries. Even so, under McMillan's leadership, the team had a winning record.
Much has been made over Phil Jackson getting six championship rings, when he was coaching Michael Jordon. The team was using the much heralded "Triangle Offense." This system is supposed to be awesome, but Jordon did not win a championship with it, when Jordan left the team to try to play professional baseball. The Triangle Offense seems to work best, when you have most of the best players on your team.
I realize that I am in the minority, but I am happy that the Lakers did not bring Jackson back, and that they gave the job to Mike D'ANTONI. He has not yet won a championship. However, when he was coaching the Phoenix suns, they waged absolute wars against the Lakers. His teams score lots of points, but unfortunately they also gave up lots of them. I think that he will be very successful with the Lakers, and that he will quickly become a Fan Favorite. Sir, welcome to Los Angeles!
Sure, Phil had the rings, but he seemed to go out of his way to disrespect some people and to make them dislike him. He liked to let everyone know that he thought he was smart, and that he was some kind of a Zen Master. He desperately wanted to coach the Lakers again, but he wanted them to beg him, and they decided not to do that. So, now he can just sit home, count his rings, look into the mirror, and tell himself what a wonderful person he is.
UCLA-USC -- This day had to come. Most of us thought that it would take two or three years for it to get here, if it ever did. UCLA chose not to wait; they bit the bullet, and worked hard to have a great season. They have done that, and now they want even more.
The Bruins have been playing, tough, inspired football. The Trojans, on the other hand, have not played as hard since they had visions of championship trophies dancing in their heads. The Trojans thought that their team would win the National Championship, but they were wrong. They also thought that one of their teammates would win the Heisman Trophy, but that is not going to happen either.
It now appears that the Trojans are being coached by Dennis the Menace. If they are not switching jersey numbers, they are letting some of the air out of the game balls. They are trying to cheat in ways that I never heard of. Lane Kiffin was born to coach a team like the Raiders, or the Folsom Prison All Stars. Given the opportunity, he is bound to think up some new mischief.
Everyone who knows me knows that I am a Trojan through and through. When I am cut, I believe Cardinal and Goal. So, you can understand my pain when I predict that UCLA will win the Big Game this Saturday at the Rose Bowl. I think that this version of the Bruins has too much grit, and that the Trojans are still dreaming of Heisman's.
And More -- Kevin Sumlin did the impossible and led the Texas A&M Aggies to a thrilling, improbable victory over the highly favored Alabama Crimson Tide. He was being cheered by some of the same people who are now signing petitions to have their states secede from the United States of America. Is this a strange country, or what?