Laker’s Front Office Under Heavy Fire
March 10, 2014 in Sports News
When a professional sports team owner comes under fire in the press it’s ‘all part of the job’. When guys like Magic Johnson and Kobe Bryant are calling him out, look for some changes to be made.
The Los Angeles Lakers are 22-42 so far this season. Can you believe it? Lakers fans can’t? How did one of the most storied franchises in the history of the NBA go from a perennial playoff team to the very bottom of the barrel in the NBA West.
Mike D’Antoni is just not making it in LA and it’s probably not even his fault. You see, the whole thing is a family feud that got out of hand. The guy responsible for putting the Laker organization on the map was named Jerry Buss and he was widely known as one of the greatest team owners in the league.
Sadly, Mr. Buss passed away last year and the team’s management went to his son Jim Buss, not to his daughter Jeanie who had been very involved with the Laker team for her whole life. In what was seen as a raw power play by Jim, Phil Jackson, who stood ready to take over once again as head coach of the Lakers, was turned down for the job and Mike D’Antoni was installed as the new coach of the Lakers.
Jeanie Buss wrote a book entitled Laker Girl in which she calls the move a ‘betrayal’ which has led to a split between her and her brother Jim. For those who didn’t already know, Phil Jackson and Jeanie Buss are a couple and have been for quite some time now. It seems that Jim Buss was worried about being overpowered with Jackson as coach.
Now the Lakers most valuable and most outspoken player, Kobe Bryant, has also come out against Jim Buss and Mike D’Antoni saying that he had “no interest” in playing for D’Antoni next season. Pau Gasol has also been highly critical of D’Antoni’s offensive scheme this season.
Kobe explained to the press what it is to be a Laker fan, “It’s hard to really understand where we’re coming from, what we’re used to, what we’re accustomed to, which is playing for championships. Everything else is a complete failure. That’s just how it is.”
When it was announced that Phil Jackson was close to a deal to take over as the new GM of the Knicks, both Kobe and Magic Johnson took to the airways. Magic tweeted, “I love Jim & Jeanie Buss, but we need Phil Jackson to be the face of our great organization.”