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Report: Lionel Hollins to interview for Lakers head coaching job

May 25, 2014, 1:59 PM EDT

San Antonio Spurs v Memphis Grizzlies - Game Three Getty Images

While the Lakers have cast a wide net in their coaching search, when it has come down to interviews they have gone to experienced veterans with some history of success — Mike Dunleavy (he coached the Lakers to the NBA Finals) and Byron Scott (who twice coached the Nets to the NBA Finals).

Now add Lionel Hollins to the mix.

The former Memphis coach who built a defense-first team and took them to the Western Conference Finals, the best coach left on the market, will get an interview, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.

Lakers management plans to interview Hollins later this week, league sources said….

Hollins’ history of strong defensive preparation and results, as well as a serious-minded leadership style, assuredly will appeal to Lakers star Kobe Bryant. Like Lakers management, Bryant is hopeful of the team finding a proven head coach with a winning track record.

Kobe has made it clear he wants to win now, that he’s only got a couple of years left, and Hollins is a better coach for winning now than the other two (both of whom would be better than a college coach brought up, for example).

Hollins clashed with the more advanced stats driven front office owner Robert Pera put in place and Hollins did not have his contract renewed. Of course, we look back at that now — with the Memphis front office cleaned out again, the old GM with the power and coach Dave Joerger about to head to Minnesota to replace Rick Adelman — that maybe Hollins wasn’t exactly the problem.

Hollins would be an interesting fit, a no-nonsense kind of guy that is a departure from the last few Lakers coaches. He has built a strong culture, has a distinct philosophy and it built a quality team in Memphis. It’s the kind of team and trajectory the Lakers would like to be on.

  1. therealhtj - May 25, 2014 at 2:03 PM

    First realistic option in their coaching search thus far.

  2. boltsup - May 25, 2014 at 2:04 PM

    Now we are making progress… If it ain’t B. Scott, I’m definitely down for Hollins

    No more Mike D’s or B’s

    • duhwighthoward - May 26, 2014 at 10:43 AM

      Another “no more Mikes” comment. I wish you were here so I could punch you in the face. Shut up already.

  3. thevikesarebest - May 25, 2014 at 2:08 PM

    There must be nothing else for this guy to do if he wants to waste his time coaching this joke of high school team known as the lakers.10 years of mediocre coming up.

    • mytthor - May 25, 2014 at 3:56 PM

      There’s just no evidence for this whatsoever. Teams with the types of advantages the Lakers have don’t stay away for that long. The Lakers are a historically attractive destination, they have a very competent GM, and will always have the ability to carry one of the top 5 payrolls in the league. There’s no reason to think they would be mediocre for 10 freaking years. The most you can say at this point is they’re unlikely to contend while Kobe is still on his current contract.

  4. Gordon - May 25, 2014 at 2:22 PM

    This guy is a good coach. He could figure out how to work with King Kobe.

  5. sportsfan18 - May 25, 2014 at 2:23 PM

    they just want to make sure their head coach is older than KoMe is all…

  6. csbanter - May 25, 2014 at 2:25 PM

    Byron Scott is the best fit for this Kobe-led Lakers team for several reasons

    1) He wasn’t just a fringe player on good teams (steve kerr)
    2) He has actually had some success coaching in the NBA (back to back NBA finals)
    3) He’s already Magic Approved (this matter don’t act like Magic’s opinion is worthless)

    unproven guys like Lionel Hollins doesn’t make sense. The Lakers need a coach that won’t be afraid to get into Kobe’s face.

    • sportsfan18 - May 25, 2014 at 3:02 PM


      1) Lionel’s career PER in the NBA was 13.0 Kerr’s was 13.1. So, IF Kerr was ONLY a fringe player on good teams, then what was Lionel?

      Lionel’s true shooting percentage was a TERRIBLE .486% for his career and Kerr’s was a way up there .593% Lionel couldn’t shoot.

      2) Really? back to back NBA Finals. Lionel has NEVER coached in the NBA Finals as a team’s head coach. He did reach the Western conference finals once though.

      But yes, he’s coached whereas Kerr hasn’t. My point isn’t that but just how wrong you are about his back to back finals comment.

      3) Let’s see who else is Magic Approved as you say… Byron Scott, Doc Rivers, Mike Brown, Tyronn Lue, Patrick Ewing, Scottie Pippen, David Vanterpool, Dale Osborne, Stephen Silas, J.B. Bickerstaff, Terry Porter, Maurice Cheeks, Bob McAdoo, Derek Fisher, Jason Kidd… and a few others too…

      • mackcarrington - May 25, 2014 at 3:38 PM

        Having a bad day with reading comprehension?
        It happens sometimes.

      • capya - May 25, 2014 at 3:38 PM

        1) csbanter said BYRON SCOTT not Hollins.

        2) Scott’s career PER was 15.5, so he wins.

        3) Scott coached the Nets to back to back NBA Finals.

        4) My point is just how wrong you are about everything you wrote.

        5) Reading comprehension FTW.

      • sportsfan18 - May 25, 2014 at 4:11 PM

        I missed that.

        Thanks for pointing it out. Not my first mistake on here and won’t be my last…

        I’ve always owned up to my mistakes on here and I always will.

        Again, I missed that completely.

        Appreciate the heads up.

  7. bhunter1995 - May 25, 2014 at 5:19 PM

    GEORGE KARL is currently unemployed, cmon Lakers, wake up he was the third best coach in the league when he was employed.

    • sportsfan18 - May 25, 2014 at 5:32 PM

      MR. Karl cannot make Filet mignon out of Spam…

  8. rajbais - May 26, 2014 at 12:05 AM

    He’s good for Kobe possibly, but he’ll only be good if Kobe is moved to PG like how he was from 2000-2003.

    He’s an underrated decision maker and they can grind it out like how Hollins would want.

  9. scbaby2013 - May 26, 2014 at 11:47 AM

    I prefer b Scott but would be ok with hollins. These 2 guys have proven they can coach.

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