Jeremy Lin, Byron Scott

It seems the rift between Byron Scott and Jeremy Lin is growing, which would be a worrying issue unless we all knew Lin isn’t going to be sticking around for much longer, free of the punishment of playing under someone who should be unemployable in the NBA, although free agency isn’t a guarantee he’ll find himself in a better situation.

Scott forgets one thing: He hasn’t been to the playoff in a very long time (2009). Since then he hasn’t coached a team to more than 24 wins in a single season. Lets give him a discount because one of his seasons with the Cavaliers was the lockout one, coaching them in just 66 games. Their winning percentage? Happened to be a whopping 31.8%, not exactly a testament to the coaching talents of Scott, with has past success having more to do with quality point guards like Jason Kidd and Chris Paul than his actual coaching ability.

It’s interesting to read what Jeremy Lin had to say to Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News, both in regards to Byron Scott benching him in the loss to the Warriors and when it comes to his own style of play.

I haven’t talked to him about the turnovers. He hasn’t given me feedback on what he wants me to do to be better. It’s a constant push and pull. Everything about the game is a balance. I can sit there and play safe and not have any turnovers. But that means I won’t be myself as a player. I won’t be making plays that I make. I drive to the rim and to the basket really hard and put my head down. The majority of the time, I feel like something good will happen. But there will be times it won’t. To some degree, you have to live with some of those risks.

Yes, Lin plays risky basketball. He drives into the lane and a lot of time improvises from there. He believes in his quickness and elusiveness to get point, go to the line or find open players. It sometimes turns into a turnovers, but he’s been at a steady 18%-ish Turnover percentage over the last three seasons and around 4.3-4.5 turnovers per 100 possessions. That’s not great, but it’s not something that’s costing the team wins on a regular basis, like some would like to present it.

It doesn’t actually matter. Even if Scott gives Lin more minutes from now until the end of the season, he’s not staying with the Lakers. The organization and its basketball plans don’t have the spot and role Lin needs in order to bring out his best basketball. Jordan Clarkson is the new coach’s pet everyone is trying to promote. Who knows, maybe the Lakers have found themselves a talented scorer for years to come. But point guard? Clarkson doesn’t seem too keen on passing the ball and playing like a floor manager.

Byron Scott keeps calling out his players and throwing them under the bus; some more than others. That’s the only excuse he has left in his magazine as he heads towards the end of the season with nothing to show for it. Forget about the tanking – there’s no individual growth for anyone but Clarkson, and it probably has a lot more to do with the minutes he’s getting than Scott’s “mentoring”. No growth and development as a team on offense or defense.

It’s hard to respect a coach everyone can see knows nothing about improving a team, or at least forgot everything he once knew. It’s even harder respecting that coach when he keeps making it seem like he’s the only one doing his job.

Image: Source