Byron Scott: If I Coach LA Lakers, Kobe Bryant Will ‘Have to Change His Game’

If Byron Scott is as interested in becoming the next head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers as he says he is, he's got a funny way of showing it.

ESPN's Chris Broussard reported that Scott interviewed with the Lakers on May 20, and Scott later confirmed that report on SiriusXM's Coach's Corner show.

Cut to the present, as Scott is now discussing his desire to coach his former team rather openly:

That's all great, and it certainly seems like there's a desire among Lakers fans to bring in a coach with ties to the franchise. After dealing with Mike D'Antoni, Purple and Gold loyalists want somebody who has a certain reverence for the organization. Scott clearly has that part covered.

But for a guy with such a deep appreciation and understanding of what it means to be a Laker, he's showing a pretty fundamental misunderstanding of how things work in L.A.:

Everyone knows Kobe Bryant changes for no man. Well, that's not entirely true; Phil Jackson managed to tame him to some degree. But for the most part, Bryant is who he is, and his game doesn't figure to change a whole lot.

That's as much a statement about Bryant's inherent confidence and stubbornness as it is an acknowledgment of his age.

He'll be 36 when the 2014-15 season begins, and there aren't too many players who make significant alterations to their game at that advanced stage. Fighting back from injury and waging war against Father Time might make it difficult for Bryant to do some of the things he used to, so it's possible he'll naturally make tweaks to compensate for waning physical skills.

But it's not a great idea for Scott to make a public demand of Bryant like this, especially not before he's got the job.

After all, Bryant is still a universally revered figure in Lakers lore. If he isn't happy with some of the things Scott is saying, Scott won't get the job. And if yo...

About the Author