Best 5 Candidates to Coach the LA Lakers Next Season

Byron Scott’s tenure as Los Angeles Lakers head coach has not been a smashing success—witness just 35 wins and a mind-boggling 116 losses and counting. This obviously begs the question of who is best suited to succeed him.

Although change seems inevitable, it is not an entirely forgone conclusion that to happen this summer. Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times reported on Scott’s tenuous situation in February, noting, “The franchise seems torn on whether he'll return for the third and last guaranteed year on his contract.”

But it’s hard to ignore the obvious—this is a team in desperate need of a fresh start. Scott’s lack of offensive vision, his inability to breathe fire into the team’s defense and his frequent tone-deaf harpings on players have run their course.

Enough with the hand-wringing about what hasn’t worked. It’s time to consider some of the best candidates to get this team back on course.


Ettore Messina

Ettore Messina is a bona fide coaching legend in international basketball—a winner of four Euroleague championships along with too many other honors to easily list.

The Italian League Hall of Famer has also been making inroads in the Association as an assistant coach to Gregg Popovich and the San Antonio Spurs for the past two seasons. Lakers fans have some additional familiarity with Messina—his first NBA experience came as a full-time consultant under Mike Brown during 2011-12.

The veteran coach’s basketball creds alone don’t qualify him to lead the Lakers. (After all, Scott’s lengthy resume didn’t prevent him from steering L.A. into a ditch.)

But while Messina had a reputation for ruling with an iron fist overseas, he has willingly absorbed the evolving nuances of the NBA under Popovich, blending his long-preferred half-c...

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