After the Lakers fired head coach Frank Vogel on Monday, it didn’t take long for sources to leak details on LeBron James’ next coach pick. According to Sam Amick of The Athletic, LeBron wants Mark Jackson to coach his team. “Sources say James would be enthused by the prospect of Mark Jackson landing the job,” said Amick.
“But as history tells us, that doesn’t mean it will actually happen.” Let’s not forget, both James and Anthony Davis wanted the organization to pursue Russell Westbrook last offseason as well. The four-time MVP needs to be careful what he wishes for.
LeBron James would be very enthused by the prospect of Mark Jackson landing the Lakers head coaching job, sources tell @sam_amick.
Jackson, an NBA analyst on ESPN, coached the Warriors from 2011-2014.
— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) April 12, 2022
Additionally, Kevin Durant advocated for Mark Jackson to coach the Nets after the 2020 NBA Finals. Of course, Brooklyn’s front office signed first-time head coach Steve Nash to a four-year contract on Sept. 3, 2020.
Not to mention, James wanted Tyronn Lue to coach the Lakers a couple of years ago as well. However, Lue went on to replace Doc Rivers as head coach of the Clippers in 2020.
In his first season, the Clippers finished 47-25 (.653), and they lost in the Conference Semifinals. As a head coach, Lue coached LeBron James in Cleveland from 2016 to 2018.
Mark Jackson underachieved with Warriors
Everyone knows the Lakers’ players are still fuming over missing the playoffs again. The team’s first-round exit against the Suns in the 2021 NBA Playoffs also disappointed a lot of folks. Though, what’s the appeal of Mark Jackson? He coached the Warriors from 2011 until 2014. In three seasons, Jackson accumulated a record of 121-109 (.526) in the regular season.
Plus, Jackson excelled the most in the 2012-13 season, when the Warriors finished 47-35 (.573). They won 51 games in the following season, but the team in 2013 was more successful in the postseason. Golden State made it to the Conference Semifinals. So, he has playoff experience.
Nonetheless, look at the talent he had. Jackson coached Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green back then. With the same players, Steve Kerr went on to win three NBA titles coaching the Warriors.
This might not be the fairest comparison, however, there are better candidates for the Lakers job. Under Jackson, it is doubtful that Los Angeles would win a championship with LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook.
How can LeBron James help to redeem the Lakers?
Moreover, this is the point of LeBron’s career where he should stop demanding control over personnel decisions for the team. He’s one of the greatest players ever, but he is not a coach, general manager or owner. After a tumultuous season for Los Angeles, wouldn’t James rather sit this one out? James can help redeem the Lakers by letting the front office run the team.
Perhaps the Lakers are not an attractive team right now to veteran coaches. Expectations are high, and maybe the organization’s culture has taken a hit. It seems as if LeBron James, general manager Rob Pelinka and the Buss Family are all trying to steer the ship at the same time. Needless to say, this will not end well.
The damage has already been done. Leading up to Frank Vogel’s firing, multiple reports questioned the status of Vogel’s relationship with his players. Apparently, his stars weren’t respecting him. Unless the price is right, the majority of coaches want to avoid a messy situation. In three full seasons in Los Angeles, Vogel went 127-98 (.564).