Byron Scott’s job security may not be as locked in as he thinks it is with the Los Angeles Lakers.
According to Marc Stein of ESPN, the Lakers are “deliberating whether to keep Byron Scott” for the 2016-17 season.
This report comes just days after Scott proudly declared he “absolutely” believes he’ll be the head coach next year. In the same interview, he slammed any critical fans by saying he’s “a lot smarter than all of them” in terms of basketball.
That the Lakers are considering whether or not to let him go shouldn’t be surprising.
On the one hand, it was expected that Los Angeles was going to stink this past season. After all, it was a season dedicated to celebrating one of the franchise’s most legendary players, Kobe Bryant.
But Scott failed to do a good job developing his young players in the meantime. He completely botched things with D’Angelo Russell, who lost minutes for a while when the coach was frustrated with turnover issues.
In a season when losing is expected, you must let your young players work through their kinks so they can be better over the long haul. Scott failed to do that.
Then there’s the fact that the Lakers might be able to attract one of the hottest young coaches in the Association right now in Luke Walton. Walton is going to be hotly pursued, and he’s reportedly already turned down an offer to coach the New York Knicks.
The opportunity to coach the Lakers — a team his father played briefly for in the mid 1980s — could be quite enticing for a young man looking to build his own legacy with a legendary organization.
There are other coaching options out there for the Lakers as well, and it’s not like Scott is a great first option to begin with. His career winning percentage as an NBA coach is .412 — a dismal number.
Change at the top might be the best thing for the Lakers. Scott’s no savior, but someone else might be able to come in and coach up the youngsters on the roster to become a formidable squad in short order.