After a disastrous 17-65 record, and a cellar-dealing season in the NBA’s Western Conference, the Los Angeles Lakers cut ties with their head coach Byron Scott.
The team made quick arrangements to start their rebuilding process in the post Kobe Bryant-era, as they hired former forward and current Golden State Assistant Coach Luke Walton to patron the sides in the next season.
Walton was part of the back-to-back championship years of the Lakers in 2009 and 2010. Moreover, he led the 2015-2016 Warriors to a 39-4 start in this year after being an interim coach while Steve Kerr was out.
In an interview with ESPN, Walton’s decision had to come hard as he were to part ways with the record-setting Warriors, the best regular season team in NBA History.
“It was a tough decision, but I didn’t have to sleep on it because I already kind of thought it out. Obviously, I love the past two years, the players here are incredible, not just talent-wise, but the people they are. I love the coaching staff I work with here” said the 10-year NBA veteran.
Walton expressed on how things turned out quickly in what will be his new post for the 2016 season saying “It’s obviously tough to leave this(Warriors) but it’s definitely an opportunity not to pass out on. The fact that I played for the Lakers, and I’m part of that family. Before I took this job, I watched Laker games and it’s nice to help rebuild what we used to have there.”
In addition, he believes that the team can turn it around with a core of young talented players which include Fil-Am Jordan Clarkson and two former lottery picks in Julius Randle and D’Angelo Russell. The Lakers are projected to land at least a top 3 pick in the upcoming 2016 draft, which they can use on landing big names like Ben Simmons, Buddy Hield, Brandon Ingram and Dragan Bender.
For the meantime, Walton is still part of the defending NBA champs Warriors and are in stride and locked in to try and capture another NBA Title. (Jan Gonzales)