The Los Angeles Lakers are failing at giving their lottery draft pick the opportunity to experience mistakes in crunch time. Byron Scott says he’s about winning, not necessarily developing players, but he’s bad at both.
The flagship of Los Angeles sports for so many years is in a sorry state for the last four or five seasons. While it’s bad enough they’ve never been able to make their Kobe Bryant goodbye at the right time (will they ever?), digging even deeper into their glorious past landed them with a has-been head coach who is excellent at looking cross while crossing his arms and looking at a certain point on the floor, but there’s not a lot else he does well these days when it comes to giving a team some sort of extra or advantage.
Scott: “I’m not always thinking about necessarily developing them, I’m always thinking about trying to win.”
— Bill Oram (@billoram) November 5, 2015
What a wonderful head coach, right? Nope. At this point, it’s harder and harder to understand how come Scott is still working on the sidelines for the Lakers. Because Scott isn’t doing either. He also said that developing players often happens away from the games – in practice, training etc. But Clarkson became a meaningful player thanks to minutes on the floor (not planned, just happened). A lot of the summer work players put in has nothing to do with the head coach, unless Scott oversees and approves individual training regiments for players, which by the way the Lakers look, is doubtful.
Scott lives in a world separate from real life, or is simply putting on an exceptional, oblivious poker face to reality. He hasn’t been positively influential on a team since his days with the Nets, and that itself was probably more about Jason Kidd than Scott’s on coaching “prowess”. The fact that he was a very good basketball player with the 1980’s Lakers doesn’t make him some kind of genius who knows better than anyone. His time as the Lakers head coach tells us the exact opposite.
Trying to win? Then Kobe Bryant shouldn’t be allowed to do whatever he wants to on the floor. Then this team should become about Julius Randle and Clarkson. There are a lot of obvious things the Lakers can do to win now and in the future, but they keep getting hung up on disastrous links and relationships, either for nostalgic reasons or by playing the even longer, riskier and foolish game of tanking. Either way, Scott shouldn’t be the man overseeing the process and transition.