D’Antoni endured a disappointing tenure plagued by injuries to key players.
Former Los Angeles Lakers star Magic Johnson did little to hide his joy at the news that Mike D’Antoni had resigned from his post as coach of the franchise on Wednesday.
Essentially, it is believed that D’Antoni left before the team had a chance to fire him, and after a dismal season in which the Lakers finished with a 27-55 record which left them just one place above the bottom of the Western Conference standings, the decision was inevitable.
While the entire blame shouldn’t fall at the feet of the coach considering the number of injuries he had to deal with throughout the year, it is accepted that D’Antoni’s philosophies and system clashed with the players he had at his disposal.
Pau Gasol was amongst the more vocal members of the roster in expressing his displeasure with the way he was being utilised, while the run-and-gun system perhaps clashed with Kobe Bryant’s style when he was healthy enough to play.
D’Antoni has preached pace and ball movement throughout his career and wanted to implement the same ideas in Los Angeles, although as the franchise go through a transitional period it was always going to prove difficult.
While he can argue that he made the best of a bad situation, it doesn’t hide the fact that he finished with the worst record of any coach in Lakers history, and Johnson is delighted that a new coach will be in place next season.
Happy days are here again! Mike D'Antoni resigns as the Lakers coach. I couldn't be happier!
— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) May 1, 2014
Early reports claim that D’Antoni will now wait to find out the fate of several NBA coaches around the league in the off-season, with the Golden State Warriors tipped to be an ideal landing spot for his next job.