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Larry Brown implies he’s not interested in coaching the Lakers

Jun 4, 2014, 9:55 AM EDT

Larry Brown Larry Brown

The Lakers have reportedly discussed reaching out to Larry Brown about becoming their next coach.

It hasn’t happened (yet?), according to Brown.

Sure, he and Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak have talked. But, as Brown tells it, they’re just a couple former Dean Smith players keeping in touch and building on their University of North Carolina roots.

Sam Amick of USA Today:

Larry Brown has been talking to Los Angeles Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak, alright, but not as some sort of recruitment for the vacant coaching job.

“I’ve always kept in touch with Mitch; I admire the hell out of him,” the 73-year-old Brown told USA TODAY Sports by phone on Tuesday. “I talk to Mitch all the time. … (But) we’re not talking about coaching the Lakers. I’ve read some of the names. They’ve got a long list of good people to choose from, and I’m here at SMU. I want to win a national championship.”

“I’m just so thankful SMU gave me this chance,” Brown said. “We have made such progress. We’ve got a bunch of young kids already committed for the future and I’d love to finish it out here. … I’d love to see (the Lakers) get a great coach, because I love Mitch and I love that franchise. But I’m thrilled where I am. I feel so fortunate I’ve had this chance.”

“Not everybody would give an old man like me a chance to coach, so I’ve been pretty fortunate to have that opportunity here,” Brown said. “We’re moving forward (at SMU), so I’m OK.”

Notice how Brown never outright denies an interest in the Lakers job?

He can be thrilled where he is and thankful for his chance at SMU and moving forward at SMU – all while simultaneously wanting to coach the Lakers.

Brown is an excellent coach. He’s even better at navigating his way between jobs.

He knows what he’s doing here, and it’s possible his conversations with Kupchak turn more serious later. It’s unlikely Brown coaches the Lakers. Their search has been slow and wide.

But it’s likely Brown wants to return to the NBA at some point. I doubt he’d stop listening to inquiries just because he’s happy at SMU.

  1. stadix093 - Jun 4, 2014 at 10:01 AM

    Oh thank goodness.

  2. kb2408 - Jun 4, 2014 at 10:10 AM

    Why are the LAKERS wasting their time with “candidates” they know they’re not gonna hire?! Brown is freaking 80 years old!! Hire Byron or D. Fish and let’s get going!

    • billtetley53 - Jun 4, 2014 at 1:10 PM

      Leave it to you to want a member of the “family” to be the next lakers coach. Youll proclaim whoever is named the next coach the 2nd coming of Christ, no matter who it is, and that includes Larry Brown!

      You have to be the dumbest, most rooting immature fan on planet earth. Youre in your 40s, act like it! You act like a 12 year old girl the way you gush over Kobe and anything laker. You are nauseating.

  3. spursareold - Jun 4, 2014 at 10:52 AM

    Brown is never happy anywhere. He’s a wonderful Xs and Os coach, but he quit the first coaching job he was ever hired for, because they wouldn’t re-carpet his office. That’s who Larry Brown is: the ultimate fussbudget.

  4. csbanter - Jun 4, 2014 at 11:20 AM

    Since the Lakers and Knicks are so confused comm. Silver should ban them from making any coaching announcement until after the finals are over. The Spurs and Heat are doing things the right way, no need to steal any of the Finals spotlight.

  5. pbtunpaidwriter - Jun 4, 2014 at 11:40 AM

    Next town Brown! One of the most overrated coaches ever.

    Jalen Rose – I share your hatred!

    • spursareold - Jun 4, 2014 at 5:38 PM

      He is not overrated. He’s the best living Xs and Os coach on planet Earth.

      He is a d00sh, though. Being good at your job doesn’t make you a good person.

  6. chargerdillon - Jun 4, 2014 at 11:47 AM

    Larry Brown coached a bunch of nobody’s in Detroit to a championship over Kobe, Shaq, Karl Malone, and Gary Payton.

    That does not happen by luck.

    Larry Brown also coached the Clippers to the playoffs something they had not seen for decades.

    This also did not happen by luck.

    If you really think Larry Brown is a bad coach, I can only imagine what you do for a living.

    • azarkhan - Jun 4, 2014 at 12:19 PM

      I wouldn’t call Chauncey Billups, Richard Hamilton, Tayshaun Prince or the Wallace boys “nobody’s”. Also, that Piston team was outstanding on defense (thanks to previous coach Rick Carlisle).

      As for the Lakers, Karl Malone was 40 years old and Gary Payton was 35. They were just hanging on hoping to win a championship. Plus Kobe and Shaq were going through their divorce.

      I agree with you that Larry Brown is an excellent coach. He just doesn’t like to stay in one place too long.

  7. xmatt0926x - Jun 4, 2014 at 1:24 PM

    Give me a break. Anyone who has followed Larry Brown knows this is ALWAYS how he talks about any job rumor. He always loves where he’s at. Every job is his dream job. He’s always grateful to be where he’s at. He’d finally love to stay at one place. This is all such typical Larry Brown speak.

    Don’t get me wrong. Maybe because of his age he’s finally telling the truth, but you would never be able to tell from his latest denial/non-denial speech.

  8. mvp43 - Jun 4, 2014 at 2:06 PM

    The Lakers need a coach with pedigree to keep Kobe in his place. Unfortunately there are precious few that meet that criteria. The Lakers would’ve been better off getting rid of Kobe and starting fresh.

  9. marcusfitzhugh - Jun 4, 2014 at 3:23 PM

    The last ex-New York Knicks coach the Lakers hired (D’antoni) didn’t fare too well. If LA got the Knicks version of Larry Brown, there would be rioting in the streets. It would make the Clipper fans happy though

    • sportsfan18 - Jun 4, 2014 at 5:57 PM

      Uh, the Lakers just finished with 27 wins…

      Again, that was 27 & 55 Faker fans…

      Where were the riots? Brown would get at least 28 wins next year, maybe 29 wins…

      And they CAN’T riot when they didn’t with FEWER losses the year before…

      I mean, that WOULD be an IMPROVEMENT for the Fakers…

  10. sportsfan18 - Jun 4, 2014 at 3:49 PM

    WHY would Brown want to go to that mess?

    A hailstorm of losses coming the Lakers way next season…

    They’re goal is 28 wins… you know, to IMPROVE on last years win total…

  11. eugenesaxe1 - Jun 4, 2014 at 6:24 PM

    Stay put Larry, you do more good at the college level.

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