Los Angeles Lakers: Picking Right Coach Is Critical; Best Candidate Is Obvious

So, is it okay if I toss out an opinion about the Lakers? As a former Featured Columnist for the Clippers, I have rarely dipped my toes into purple and gold water, but this coaching vacancy has forced me to to chime in.

I hope Clipper fans forgive me while Laker fans indulge me.

Before I continue about the potential replacement for P.J., I wanted to throw out my Laker resume, so to speak. Truth is, I was raised a Laker fan. Magic's Showtime team was my team.

I remember seeing that game—coincidentally against the San Diego Clippers—where the rookie jumped on a very surprised Kareem Abdul-Jabbar after the latter made a long sky hook to win game one of a long season. That smile, the enthusiasm and his game had me, and all of LA, hooked.

As much as I loved watching Magic and Kareem do their thing, I was more a fan of Norm Nixon and Jamal Wilkes. Nixon's fall-away jumper was unstoppable. I remember hearing him give credit for that shot to a player he practiced against named Jose Champagne.

Great name.

As for Jamal Wilkes, well, in addition to having one of the best nicknames in the history of the game, his jump shot was immortalized by then Laker play by play announcer Chick Hearn. The player they called "Silk" because of his smooth jump shot regularly took his awkward jump shot from about twenty feet out. It's not quite on par with Chicks call of a Kareem Sky Hook, "He swings left, shoots right, its good!", but hearing him describe a Wilkes jump shot still resonates with me.

"Magic drives, kicks it out to Wilkes for a twenty foot layup. Its good!"

Jamal Wilkes was the king of the twenty foot layup. Classic Chick Hearn.

Incidentally, would Ray Allen be today's ...

About the Author