Lakers ‘Coach Quest’ Recap

Last week we put together arguments for three popular coaching candidates that the Lakers are reportedly looking at to replace the void left by Phil Jackson. Three of the most talked about choices for the next Los Angeles coach have been Rick Adelman, Jeff Van Gundy, and Mike Dunleavy.

Here’s a look at the three choices and a breakdown of how each could help the Lakers move on into the future:

Mike Dunleavy: Just as with Adelman and Van Gundy, Dunleavy comes with an experienced resume that includes success at multiple coaching stops. He guided the the Clippers to their most successful season in franchise history (no small feat considering the owner), captained a Portland team that was within a quarter of ending the ShaKobe Lakers dynasty before it ever got started, and of course took the Lakers to the finals in his rookie coaching campaign. Continue reading…

Rick Adelman: Of the top four prospective choices on the table Adelman has the most career regular season wins (945), highest winning percentage (.605) and most playoff wins (79). His track record, including two finals appearances with the Blazers and a near miss with the 2002 Kings, is as solid as they come. Continue reading…

Jeff Van Gundy: Only once in his career has Jeff Van Gundy had a team he coached for the whole season that wasn’t in the top 5 in defensive rating (the outlier is the 2000 Knicks, who finished 6th). The fact is the Van Gundy has shown a propensity to scheme well on defense and to extract maximum effort from his players. Like his mentor Pat Riley, Van Gundy is a motivator. There is never a question about effort from a Jeff Van Gundy team. And I think that’s exactly what the Lakers need right now, a commitment to defense. Continue reading…

Brian Shaw: There is something to be said for continuity and the of hiring Shaw would represent the ultimate in that respect. He would almost certainly run the triangle offense and there is probably no other available candidate more qualified to do so than he. The triangle has been good to the Lakers over the years and as recently a season ago it was the system that brought them a second consecutive title. And really the truth is that with their current roster of aging players and non-athletes, it tough to foresee the Lakers changing styles of play with their current personnel. But keeping the system in tact isn’t the only reason to go with Shaw. Continue reading…

Whoever the Lakers hire they will have big shoes to fill. Jackson’s career was certainly legendary, and whoever Los Angeles chooses to replace him with will face plenty of scrutiny. While the coaching search is most likely far from over, these three choices have been the names tossed around the most since the Lakers were eliminated from the playoffs two weeks ago.

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