The Lakers fired Mike D’Antoni back on April 30 and since then watched most of the NBA playoffs, the Spurs win the Finals, the NBA Draft, LeBron James go home, the rest of the heart of free agency, and Summer League all go by while they waited.
After all that they decided to go with the guy who was the favorite from April 30th on, the guy that Kobe Bryant wanted from the start.
The Lakers have offered their coaching position to Byron Scott, first reported by Chris Broussard of ESPN. (Since then multiple reports close to the Lakers confirmed this.)
A deal is expected soon, at least in the next couple days.
Other coaches considered and that the Lakers reached out to included George Karl, Lionel Hollins, Derek Fisher, Kurt Rambis, Kevin Ollie and others.
Scott is a former Laker with rings from the Showtime era — the Lakers can sell this as a “return to family” — and has long been a Buss family favorite.
But he’s in a bit of a placeholder position as the Lakers try to rebuild by attracting stars — the Lakers don’t know what kind of team they want to be long term, which is a hard spot to put a coach in.
As a coach Scott guided the Nets to back-to-back NBA Finals, but after that had down-and-up-and-down tenures in New Orleans (with Chris Paul) and Cleveland after LeBron James left in 2010. Scott sees himself as a developer of young talent, which is what the Lakers need, although Scott (like most coaches would) has had far more success with veteran rosters.