L.A. Lakers fire head coach after 1-4 start
Mike Brown's Lakers went 1-4 to start the 2012-2013 season.
November 9th, 2012
03:04 PM ET

L.A. Lakers fire head coach after 1-4 start

[Updated at 4:35 p.m. ET] The Los Angeles Lakers' 0-8 preseason and 1-4 start to the regular season were too much for the front office to take.

The NBA team on Friday fired second-year head coach Mike Brown, whose efforts to implement a new offense and mesh free-agent signings with stars who won a title two years ago didn't turn into wins.

"Really, it came down to ownership and management looking at the record, looking at the improvement level, and wondering a month or two or three down the road, will we be in the same spot," General Manager Mitch Kupchak told reporters.

Assistant Coach Bernie Bickerstaff will be interim head coach for Friday night's game against the Golden State Warriors, the Lakers said.

The Lakers, just two years removed from an NBA championship, are loaded with high-profile talent with the likes of all-stars Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol, as well as new additions Steve Nash, a former league MVP, and former Orlando Magic star Dwight Howard.

But Nash has missed most of the season's early games with an injury, and the Lakers struggled with a complex new offense Brown was implementing.

"I never thought we got to the point where the offense was flowing," Kupchak said. "You could see flashes of it, but we never got to a point (where it was consistent through a game)."

A reporter asked Kupchak whether a desire to make Howard's first year a smooth one was a factor in the decision. The star center would be a free agent at season's end if he doesn't sign an extension.

“Obviously, we know he is a free agent this summer, and you want to make the experience for him as good as possible, but we have a lot of other people we need to (please) as well,” Kupchak said.

Kupchak said the team's management decided Thursday night to make the move, a days after the Lakers lost a 95-86 game at Utah.

Brown released a statement saying he had great respect for the family of Lakers owner Jerry Buss "and the Lakers’ storied tradition, and I thank them for the opportunity they afforded me."

"I have a deep appreciation for the coaches and players that I worked with this past year and I wish the organization nothing but success as they move forward,” Brown said.

Before taking the Lakers job in May 2011, Brown, 42, compiled a 272-138 regular-season record in five seasons as head coach with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

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Filed under: Basketball • California • Los Angeles • NBA • Sports
soundoff (88 Responses)
  1. joe

    pat riley

    November 9, 2012 at 6:57 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Klipsan

      Agreed . . . SHOWTIME ! ! !

      November 9, 2012 at 7:06 pm | Report abuse |
  2. kica

    We want Phil! We want Phil! I NEVER liked the move to hire Brown anyway. He's not ready for the elite league.

    November 9, 2012 at 7:04 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. WOTAN

    Never before has so much been said by so few about so little.

    November 9, 2012 at 7:37 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Ben

      Did you just arrive on the Internet today? This is nothin'. :)

      November 9, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  4. jdizzle1337

    As a Lakers fan that lives in Illinois and pays lots of money so I can see every Lakers game on TV, I have to say that I am happy with this decision.

    I have watched every pre-season and regular season game this year and I can just tell that the players are not enthusiastic about the system, and it shows on the floor. It is sad to say that I have had much more enjoyment watching the LA Clippers this season and look forward to seeing their games as much as I used to enjoy watching Lakers games.

    Mike Brown was a bad choice from the beginning.

    November 9, 2012 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  5. tacojew22

    Classic example of racism! NBA get with the modern times and realize people are people no matter what color they is!

    November 9, 2012 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Steve

      10 black players ask for a black coach to be fired and it's racism? who's going to believe that? Hey kids, leave the room and let adults talk.

      November 9, 2012 at 10:55 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Hemet Jeff

    Oh sure, fire the coach...it certanly can't be the overpaid, primadonna players, could it?

    November 9, 2012 at 8:44 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  7. lakerfan247

    Sorry Mike Brown – you obviously wanted to win, but didn't seem to be in a hurry to do so.
    I'm so glad that the Lakers figured this out right away and I joyfully await the arrival of the new coach (PHIL JACKSON!!).
    Go Lakers!!!

    November 9, 2012 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  8. laguna niguel

    Hey Grumpy, but UCLA may rise from the ashes of football mediocrity and then there is basketball. So possibly some joy in Tinsel town and the Kings did win when there was a NHL.

    November 9, 2012 at 9:12 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  9. LC

    Am I the only one that finds it odd that a coach gets fired after 5 NBA regular season games? Different rules for us I guess.... smh

    November 9, 2012 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • RobbD

      I agree with you LC

      November 9, 2012 at 9:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • UmDuh

      He wasn't a great coach last season...he wasn't even a good coach last season. Come on, what do the Lakers need to do? Wait until he coaches them right out of playoff contention? He should have been fired at the end of last season. They waited too long in my opinion.

      November 10, 2012 at 5:57 am | Report abuse |
  10. RobbD

    Let Coach Brown at least 20 games then judge his record. Too quick too pull the trigger.

    November 9, 2012 at 9:28 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • UmDuh

      He's had a whole season already. He's a terrible coach. Period.

      November 10, 2012 at 5:54 am | Report abuse |
  11. IFMOY

    Some can coach, some are for window dressing.

    November 9, 2012 at 9:54 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Elated

    I am not a fan of the lakers. In fact, I hope the next meteor to hit earth destroys their arena first. The lakers are off to a pathetic start and last place? Whip out the eggnog, time to party!!

    November 9, 2012 at 11:27 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Lou Cypher

    Honestly, I cannot believe they ever hired him in the first place.

    November 10, 2012 at 12:01 am | Report abuse | Reply
  14. robin

    Bests thing for the Lakers. Mike Brown should been let go the first. I don't care for the Laker

    November 10, 2012 at 12:57 am | Report abuse | Reply
  15. flash

    Dats wat I'm talkin bout
    Damn da Lakers,them and da Yankees get just what they deserve,
    Everybody, but win nothing!!!!!!!

    November 10, 2012 at 1:13 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • David

      Win nothing? You're referencing two of the most successful franchises in the history of sport.

      Oh, and learn English or leave the discussion to the adults.

      November 10, 2012 at 1:30 am | Report abuse |
    • Jay Allen

      Talking..... Is that what you call it? Hooked On Phonics worked for me!!!!

      November 10, 2012 at 2:25 am | Report abuse |
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