Ranking all 7 Lakers head coaches since Phil Jackson from "bad" to "scapegoat"

After firing Darvin Ham, the Los Angeles Lakers have now had seven head coaches since Phil Jackson. Which one has been the best, and which one the worst?
Darvin Ham, Los Angeles Lakers
Darvin Ham, Los Angeles Lakers / Matthew Stockman/GettyImages
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No. 3: Mike Brown

In 2011, former Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Mike Brown was hired to succeed Phil Jackson as head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers. It's always a difficult task to succeed a legend, but Brown was accomplished, well-liked around the league and seemed like a great choice at the time.

His first season, the lockout-shortened 2011-12 season, was a solid one. The Lakers went 41-25 (equivalent to 51 wins in a full season), won their division and made it to the second round before losing to the Oklahoma City Thunder, who would go on to reach the NBA Finals. There was some friction between Brown and the team's veterans, led by Kobe Bryant, largely centering around the differences between Brown's Princeton offense and Phil Jackson's old Triangle offense. Those kinds of growing pains are expected when replacing an icon like Jackson, and they were more details to note than red flags.

That following offseason is what doomed Brown as the Lakers' coach. The Lakers made a couple of significant trades to land center Dwight Howard and point guard Steve Nash. On paper, pairing those two future Hall of Famers with Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol should have formed a super team, and the foursome was plastered on the covers of sports magazines.

The reality was something much different and much worse. The Lakers got out to a slow start, going 1-4 to open the year, and the Lakers' front office panicked. They fired Brown just five games into the season, hiring Mike D'Antoni to replace him as head coach.

The reality of the situation came to light in the coming months; that group simply did not have it. Kobe Bryant was unwilling to come to grips with his aging body and eroding game, Dwight Howard was unwilling to share any spotlights, and Steve Nash was a shell of himself. Sprinkle in Pau Gasol (gamely) playing out of position to accommodate Howard and you got a "Super Team" that never got off the ground.

Brown only got five games to prove something, but the rest of the year proved he wouldn't have had a shot anyway. After a long tenure with the Golden State Warriors as an assistant, Brown is now the head coach of the Sacramento Kings and won Coach of the Year for leading them back to the playoffs.