Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak spoke about the firing of Byron Scott during a press conference earlier today, as the team’s Twitter feed relays. “If you’re going to make a change, make a change now.” Kupchak said. “This was clearly just a basketball decision. … Jim [Buss] and I agreed 100 percent.”
There’s more from Los Angeles:
- The Lakers have received permission to interview Spurs assistant Ettore Messina, reports Sam Amick of USA Today. It is unclear how soon they intend to bring Messina in for a meeting.
- The Lakers intend to put a long list together of potential candidates for their head coaching vacancy, which will be headed by Warriors assistant coach Luke Walton, Messina, and UConn’s Kevin Ollie, team sources tell Kevin Ding of Bleacher Report. Ding believes that Walton is the obvious choice for the position.
- Earlier today, it was reported that Ollie has interest in the Lakers‘ job, but he would want a say in personnel decisions. That’s something that’s unlikely to happen, argues Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times (Twitter links). Pincus points out that the team isn’t in position to give out any sort of control in the front office with Kupchak and Buss around, and the team’s structure isn’t expected to change until after the 2016/17 season, at the earliest.
- The timing of Scott’s dismissal is curious, opines Chris Mannix of The Vertical. Mannix wonders whether Los Angeles could have landed Tom Thibodeau or Scott Brooks if the team had acted sooner. Brooks reportedly would have had interest in the position.