The hiring of Los Angeles Lakers head coach Frank Vogel may have come with its fair share of mixed reviews, but it appears Shaquille O’Neal is looking forward to what the 27th head coach in franchise history can do.
There had been plenty of speculation regarding the team’s head coaching job through the first month of the offseason. After failing to bring in their top two candidates, Los Angeles hired Vogel with former Milwaukee Bucks head coach Jason Kidd a member of his coaching staff.
The front office has caught plenty of flak for all the turmoil over the last year and the criticisms have only increased with their decision to hire Vogel.
According to Broderick Turner of Los Angeles Times, O’Neal feels he has done enough to deserve an opportunity:
“Give him a chance,” O’Neal told The Times on Sunday. “That’s the least people can do. He did a good job in Indiana, right? So give him a chance to see if he does a good job with the Lakers.”
O’Neal added that he will have a much easier time getting the Lakers up to speed if they can pull off a trade for a second All-Star player like Davis, according to Turner:
“The Lakers need some players, because it takes talent to win in this league,” said O’Neal, who won three of his four championships with the Lakers. “What if the Lakers get Anthony Davis? So if the Lakers get some players, Vogel could be all right.”
It is encouraging to see that O’Neal is one of the few that have taken a rather optimistic approach to the team’s current situation. While it is far too early to decide whether or not Vogel was the right choice, there is still plenty of truth to his comments.
Vogel enjoyed plenty of success during his first stint as the Indiana Pacers head coach. Many forget that his Pacers team were one of the few formidable matchups for James and the Miami Heat.
Following Vogel’s tenure with the Pacers, he became the Orlando Magic head coach. Unfortunately, he was fired after the 2017-18 NBA season following a 54-110 record in two seasons with them.
Vogel now has an opportunity to prove himself once again as the head coach of the most storied franchise in all of sports heading into the 2019-20 season. It will certainly be interesting to see if O’Neal’s optimism is ultimately justifiable.