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D'Antoni can't believe Lakers chose him over Jackson

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05:26 PM ET 11.12 | The list of people shocked that Mike D'Antoni was hired to be the next Los Angeles Lakers' coach over Phil Jackson apparently includes D'Antoni himself. In an interview with Mike LuPica of the New York Daily News, D'Antoni admitted that he initially was sure the Lakers would hire Jackson over him once the rumors got out. "Sure I did," he said. "For sure I did. Didn't everybody? When I got the call that it was me, my first reaction was, 'Are you serious?'"

New York Daily News

Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE, Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE, Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE
November 12, 2012  05:33 PM ET

"Are you crazy? You are hiring me over someone who has 11 rings ?"

November 12, 2012  05:39 PM ET
QUOTE(#1):

"Are you crazy? You are hiring me over someone who has 11 rings ?"

If you're just looking at which coach is a better match for the this Lakers team, it's Jackson by a mile.

D'Antoni's up-tempo system requires three basic things: 1) a ball-dominating point guard, 2) stretch big men who can run the floor, 3) three or (ideally) four three-point shooters on the floor at all times.

The Lakers have exactly one of those, point guard Steve Nash.

If you want to see exactly what D'Antoni needs to run his system, look at his most successful team, the 2005-06 Phoenix Suns.

That team lead the league in three pointers attempted and three-point percentage. Of the nine players who played the most minutes, seven of them took more than 100 three-pointers, and six of them shot better than 38% (above league average).

They also did it without traditional big men. The front court was Shawn Marion, Boris Diaw, and Tim Thomas ??? all of whom are better from the perimeter than the post.

That's the blueprint for a D'Antoni offense ??? put Steve Nash on the floor with three other shooters and let him run the show.

The Lakers have Nash, but they don't have any three-point shooting on the wings ??? Kobe is a career 33% three-point shooter and Metta World Peace is a career 32% shooter. In addition, their big-men are Dwight Howard (a true center) and Pau Gasol (a big who can play the perimeter but can't really run the court is not a stretch 4) ??? the exact opposite of the type of big men you want in D'Antoni's system

D'Antoni with this roster is a glaring mismatch. It's almost as bad of a mismatch as D'Antoni and last year's Knicks roster ??? and that ended in disaster.

Comment #3 has been removed
November 12, 2012  05:43 PM ET
QUOTE(#3):

This came as a suprise to most of us. Phil seemed like a no-brainer choice. Too bad it didn't work out but the Lakers should be exciting to watch now.

Aren't we trying to win championships? Or just trying to be exciting to watch

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November 12, 2012  06:00 PM ET
QUOTE(#2):

... It's almost as bad of a mismatch as D'Antoni and last year's Knicks roster ??? and that ended in disaster.

The Knicks did play well for 2-3 months during 1st half of last year when they committed to the pick&roll offense with Felton at PG. Particularly Amare did great.

With Melo, everything changed. (remember the Melo as point forward experiment)

The Lakers could really use a couple of guys who can consistently bury the 3. If Shannon Brown was still in LA -- he would have fit in great.

November 12, 2012  06:06 PM ET

Ok. Maybe with a youinger Nash and younger Kobe Dantoni makes a bit more sense,but this is not going to get a championship. Add me to the list of utterly shocked. Phil didnt actually make it easy , but CMON! Dantoni over nate?

Comment #9 has been removed
November 12, 2012  06:29 PM ET
QUOTE(#1):

"Are you crazy? You are hiring me over someone who has 11 rings ?"

Jackson is too old and the game has passed him by.

November 12, 2012  06:30 PM ET
QUOTE(#3):

This came as a suprise to most of us. Phil seemed like a no-brainer choice. Too bad it didn't work out but the Lakers should be exciting to watch now.

I predicted this would happen. They went with a younger man.

November 12, 2012  06:41 PM ET
QUOTE(#9):

Nate will be an assistant coach for Dantoni

Really?

November 12, 2012  06:45 PM ET
QUOTE(#10):

Jackson is too old and the game has passed him by.

Phil would be coaching, not playing

November 12, 2012  06:47 PM ET
QUOTE(#13):

Phil would be coaching, not playing

That's what I meant.

November 12, 2012  09:16 PM ET

D'Antoni must have felt like he had just won the lottery when he got that call.

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