Should the Los Angeles Lakers consult with Kobe Bryant when it comes to choosing the team’s next head coach? Before Mike D’Antoni resigned last week, Mitch Kupchak said that the Lakers wouldn’t sit down with Kobe and ask for his thoughts on whether the team should retain the coach or not.
However, could things now be different when it comes to choosing a new head coach? Kobe Bryant definitely hopes so.
“In the last two, they didn’t, so on the third one I’m hoping they do,” Bryant said of the Lakers’ current coaching search while appearing on Jimmy Kimmel Live! last night. “But Jimmy and Jeanie, they’re just really determined and excited about the possibilities of next season and rebuilding this and building on their father’s legacy and everything that he’s accomplished, and they’re taking the challenge extremely, extremely seriously. They’re both on the same page and they want nothing but excellence here, so I have no doubt that we’ll make it happen.”
Kobe also revealed that he now has better communication with those at the top of the organization.
“Now, I think it’s an open door policy,” Bryant said. “We talk back and forth, we text.”
For what it’s worth, Kobe seemed happy about the prospect of playing for D’Antoni when he was hired in late 2012, telling ESPN at the time that he was “very excited.”
However, the Mike Brown hiring was more of a shock to Bryant, and although the five-time NBA champion later had good things to say about Brown and his work ethic, he ultimately seemed disappointed that he found out about the hiring via text message.
Hopefully, the Lakers will listen to Bryant’s input this time, though in the end, the final decision will be made by Mitch Kupchak and Jim Buss.