Breaking Down the Next Steps in Los Angeles Lakers Rebuild

In the wake of Mike D'Antoni's departure, the Los Angeles Lakers have even more work to do.

This was always going to be a pivotal offseason for the reeling Lakers. It would shape the immediate direction of this team while gauging how quickly they can successfully rebuild.

That hasn't changed. D'Antoni's resignation, which was announced in an official team release, has only increased the importance of this summer. With him gone, the Lakers' imminent future is tethered to one person: Kobe Bryant. He is the only immovable part in this entire process. Everything and everyone else can be removed, exchanged or abandoned entirely.

To that end, the Lakers are working with a (near-)blank slate. D'Antoni was the last of their urgent loose ends. 

But one form of uncertainty is now replaced by another.

And another.

And another still.


Head Coaching Search

Installing a new head coach was always going to be part of the Lakers rebuild, even before D'Antoni resigned. It was only a matter time.

Magic Mike's future was enveloped in doubt from the moment he arrived in Los Angeles. The reasoning was simple: He wasn't Phil Jackson. The Lakers' decision to hire him over the Zen Master was never fully embraced, and D'Antoni was never completely accepted.

From the moment he assumed control, he was viewed as a stopgap, a detour on the way to something and someone better. His offensive style clashed with Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol, his relationship with Bryant was confusing and Steve Nash—the pride and joy of D'Antoni's offense in Phoenix—began succumbing to Father Time.

Calls for D'Antoni's job didn't gain serious traction until this season, but the Lakers were destined to end up here, searching for a successor to their makeshift coaching fix.

And they cannot end up here again.

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