Ranking 5 worst coaching hires in Los Angeles Lakers history

Luke Walton, Los Angeles Lakers (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Luke Walton, Los Angeles Lakers (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /
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Mike D'Antoni, Los Angeles Lakers
Mike D’Antoni, Los Angeles Lakers (Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports) /

4. Mike D’Antoni (2012-2014)

An offensive genius, Mike D’Antoni’s Phoenix Suns teams of the mid-2000s led by Steve Nash were appointment television and showed that most opposing coaches (apart from Gregg Popovich) had yet to decipher how to stop D’Antoni’s patented “Seven Seconds Or Less” offense.

Phoenix never could get over the hump, however, and in his subsequent four-year tenure with the New York Knicks, D’Antoni reached the playoffs just once and lost more games than he won. D’Antoni was brought in by the Lakers shortly after the start of the 2012-13 season and led the team to the playoffs, though they were swept in the first round.

This was a difficult time for the Lakers as they attempted to find their way as a franchise in the post-Phil Jackson era. D’Antoni was a bad hire, but he was also a victim of circumstance. He got on with Kobe Bryant, but he had issues with Pau Gasol, who he benched at one point.

L.A.’s super-team never panned out, as D’Antoni was unable to get new arrivals Dwight Howard and Nash to mesh with the team, and both struggled to stay on the floor due to health issues. D’Antoni’s second season with the team ended in disaster, as the Lakers managed just 27 wins, by far the worst mark in franchise history. Little did they know, that record would be broken several more times before the Lakers once again rose to prominence.