They're sitting at home on the first day of the 2019 NBA Playoffs, and no longer have a president or head coach after Magic Johnson abruptly stepped down in weird fashion and the team subsequently fired Luke Walton. "We wish Luke and his family the best of luck moving forward".
The Los Angeles Lakers will cater to LeBron James, regardless of who the head coach is.
"This franchise and the city will always be special to me and my family", Walton said in a statement.
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The Lakers finished 10th in the Western Conference, failing to reach the play-offs for the sixth straight year.
The two favorites now are former Cleveland Cavaliers coach Ty Lue and Philadelphia 76ers assistant coach Monty Williams. It might also have not helped that Walton and current Lakers superstar LeBron James were drafted the same year, albeit Walton being drafted much later (R2; P2). The young roster improved by leaps and bounds and played perhaps the most entertaining brand of basketball in the NBA under his leadership. Johnson, though, said that his relationship with Walton was fine after the incident, which he considered overblown. The Lakers announced on March 30 that he was done for the season.
Beyond the early-season meeting, communication between Walton and the front office was fraught, sources told ESPN. L.A. was just 17-31 the rest of the way as James missed 17 games and was in and out of the lineup until he was shut down for the season in late March.
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"We would do anything to win and we would do anything to put our life on the line to win basketball games", James said of the similarities between himself, Bryant, and Jordan in his interview with Hill. "Obviously it was frustrating, the injuries, the inability to have a consistent lineup was frustrating and hard for them". They're losing somebody who players believe in, players want to play for.
Williams' last head coaching position was when he led the New Orleans Pelicans from 2010-15.
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