Mike D’Antoni walked away from the Lakers due in part because the team is likely to attempt to re-sign Pau Gasol this summer, reports Mitch Lawrence of the New York Daily News. A source tells Lawrence that D’Antoni knew that Gasol and Kobe Bryant didn’t want to play for him, so he made the decision to resign from the team on Wednesday. Let’s have a look at some more interesting notes from Lawrence’s piece:
- Kurt Rambis and Byron Scott are two of the most viable candidates for the Lakers’ coaching job, hears Lawrence. We reported on Thursday that both Rambis and Scott are set to interview with the team.
- Despite rumored interest, Lawrence says there’s no chance John Calipari will become the next head coach for the Lakers. The team reportedly has “zero interest” in hiring Calipari.
- Stan Van Gundy was contacted about taking over the head coaching role for the Pistons, but talks didn’t get far because he wanted some level of control over the team’s personnel decisions, writes Lawrence.
- Lawrence hears that once Adam Silver meets with Donald Sterling, Silver is expected to tell Sterling that the league will battle him in court to see that the franchise is sold, no matter the resistance Sterling puts up.
- Knicks assistant GM Allan Houston and director of player personnel Mark Warkentien aren’t worried about their jobs, since the duo has contracts with owner Jim Dolan and not the Knicks specifically, says Lawrence. As a result, the pair will be able to retain their positions, even if Phil Jackson doesn’t want them around.
- The Cavs and Bucks still haven’t decided whether or not they’ll keep their general managers beyond this season, reveals Lawrence. Both Central Division teams failed to meet preseason expectations and finished well below .500.
- It’s likely Mark Jackson will be fired by the Warriors, suggests Lawrence, who adds the coach might have a hard time landing another job with an NBA team because of the perceived dysfunction in Golden State’s organization during his tenure.
- The Thunder could potentially see a first-round playoff exit tonight, but Lawrence says Scott Brooks‘ position is safe in Oklahoma City.