Nate McMillan: Coach Wouldn’t Add Necessary Defensive Mentality to Lakers’ Staff

It doesn't matter how many points the Los Angeles Lakers score in Mike D'Antoni's "seven seconds or less" system; they're still going to have to play defense sooner or later.

CBS Sports reporter Ken Berger states that "New Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni is expected to reach out to fellow Team USA assistant Nate McMillan as a possible defensive assistant on his staff, a league source told Monday."

Adding McMillan to the Lakers coaching staff isn't going to help that process along. He's a
savvy offensive mind, running a snail-like half-court offense that will likely put D'Antoni to sleep, but he's far from a defensive guru.

Berger notes in his report that "Pairing D'Antoni and McMillan would strengthen the staff's connection with Olympians Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard while quelling concerns that D'Antoni is too offense-oriented."

Team chemistry is important, especially with the volatile situation currently at play in Los Angeles, but it can't take precedence over everything else. Get along all you want, like your coaches, pat each other on the back after each bucket, but that's not going to matter if you can't get stops on the defensive end.

If you go to and peel through McMillan's teams, you'll notice that no group finished very high in terms of defensive efficiency.

If you don't feel like doing it yourself, here it is.

In Seattle, McMillan had two teams finish as low as 27th and one team finish as high as 17th in defensive efficiency. In Portland, he had a team finish as low as 28th (2005), and no squad finished higher than 13th (2008). You could look at the other numbers as well, but they aren't going to make you feel any better.

D'Antoni isn't going to be helped by that. It's not going to make the Lakers worse, but it's not going to make them better. Isn't that the goal here? Or, was it just to get rid of Mi...

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