Blog Entry

Buss: Kobe should have been consulted on coach

Posted on: May 28, 2011 11:48 pm
Edited on: July 17, 2011 6:07 pm
Lakers VP Jim Buss admits that Kobe Bryant should have been consulted on the team's coaching search. Posted by Ben Golliver. kobe-bryant

It's not even June, and the Los Angeles Lakers are already making a mess out of their summer.

This week, the team hired Mike Brown to coach the team. It was a somewhat controversial hire but not an altogether terrible one. The messy part wasn't the result; it was the process and the aftermath. 

During the search process, Lakers owner Jerry Buss specifically said that no Lakers players would be consulted regarding the search. The Los Angeles Times quoted him to that effect.
"We really don't consult the players on these matters," Buss said. "Obviously, we have to select somebody who has a reputation that players would be happy with. But to ask a direct player to select a particular coach, that's general manager territory."
OK, fine, if that's your team policy, whatever. It's a strange policy to have when Kobe Bryant, one of the best and certainly the most headstrong player in the NBA is the face of your franchise, but if that's your policy, by all means go with it.

Of course, once Brown's hiring was announced, Bryant offered a "no comment" and was said to be "surprised" by the hire. Was Bryant a bit peeved by this slight? Of course. Anyone in his position would be.

The decision to select Brown as the Lakers next coach has been widely attributed to Jim Buss, Lakers VP and son of the owner. In an interview with the Los Angeles Times on Saturday, Jim Buss does a 180 degree flip less than one week after the hiring was announced, admitting that Bryant should have been consulted during the process.
"Looking back on it, we should have contacted Kobe," Buss says. "Kobe said it was management's job to pick a coach. He just said, 'Defense first.' That's what we were doing, but we should have reached out to him."
Yeah, of course the Lakers should have reached out to Bryant. The only reason not to do so was is if the Lakers firmly and truly believed in their "no players consulted" stance. If they did, there should not be any backtracking. If it's so important that it's black and white, there should be no gray area hedging after the fact. 

Just put yourself in Bryant's shoes. You've busted your butt for more than a decade. You've brought home five rings. You're entering the final chapter of your career. You've earned every last shred of respect a player can earn in the NBA. After all of that, you're then informed that you will be left out of the process. Once the process is completed, you're told that you should have been consulted. But the hiring has been completed, of course, and there's no going back. You're stuck with the guy that you weren't asked about, whether you like it or not.

If you're Bryant, how else do you read this situation except for butt-covering lip service? If Lakers management truly wanted to show respect, they could have reached out. If they truly didn't care, they have no reason to apologize or backtrack. If they don't know what they are doing or simply can't keep their story straight ... well, then they do what they just did. 

By admitting this mistake so quickly and readily, Jim Buss totally undercuts this management team's credibility and makes a bad situation even more complicated. No one wins here: Bryant feels disrespected, Brown walks into an unnecessarily tense scene without first having Bryant's support, Lakers management looks like it's on different pages, and Jim Buss looks either weak, inconsistent or indecisive. 

Like I said, what a mess.


Since: Jun 17, 2011
Posted on: June 17, 2011 1:25 am

Buss: Kobe should have been consulted on coach

All Kobe HATERS are here... C'mon guys lets join them. LOL!!!

Since: Jun 6, 2009
Posted on: May 31, 2011 11:33 am

Buss: Kobe should have been consulted on coach

This is why I hate the Lakers. These self rightous players think they run everything. What blows me away also is the owner thinks he should have consulted with Kobe. Grow some balls and be an owner...!!! Get rid of the over priced whinning little B*****S. 

Since: Nov 15, 2008
Posted on: May 31, 2011 9:17 am

Buss: Kobe should have been consulted on coach

The plain fact that Jim Buss admits that the Black Mamba should have been consulted shows the Lakers played themselves.  I mean really why even admit that at this point.  Just to turn the screws usually but hey maybe that's just me.  What can you do now?  Nothing if your Bryant you hope Brown and his people got the memo about not rocking the boat.

Since: Mar 7, 2007
Posted on: May 31, 2011 6:35 am

Buss: Kobe should have been consulted on coach

I honestly HATE IT when a team's ownership puts their head in the sand, acting guilty because they did'nt consult a PLAYER over the team's decision to hire a coach.  It just crosses the line into a false paradigm of absurdity that makes me want to quit following the type of sport where this sort of nonsense becomes the norm, and gets swallowed by the public who keep these players in their mansions..

Since: May 31, 2011
Posted on: May 31, 2011 12:43 am

Buss: Kobe should have been consulted on coach

How precious.

A blogger for Blazer’s Edge (Golliver) predicts doom & gloom for the Purple & Gold because they “disrespected” Kobe.

But Kobe tells’s Dave McMenamin that he has great respect for Brown and is on board with the hiring, despite not being consulted about the choice. [ ]

Say your prayers Laker Nation. A Blazer blogger says the sky is falling!!!!

Since: Oct 8, 2006
Posted on: May 30, 2011 4:14 pm

Buss: Kobe should have been consulted on coach

Consult with a player my ass!   seriously!?  how foar does this have to go?   i hate pro's such a shame!  

You don't want to play stop cashing my checks!

  if, you do, shut up and go with how i run "MY" company/franchise...not "yours"..."MY" company.....and shut the f up!

Since: Mar 21, 2009
Posted on: May 30, 2011 3:55 pm

Buss: Kobe should have been consulted on coach

Ben you could have written a better blog... this is poorly written and has no flow...

Since: May 30, 2011
Posted on: May 30, 2011 3:17 pm

Buss: Kobe should have been consulted on coach

to all the extremists out there, the truth is squarely in the middle:  should the lakers have consulted w/ kobe before hiring mike brown as coach- they didnt have to consult w/  him or any other player just like they didnt consult w/ hall-of-famers  magic, worthy, kareem or any one else in coaching changes back in the 80`s and 90`s.  Was it a good idea to talk w/ him and run a few names by him to get a feel for what he`s thinking- sure, why not, he is your franchise player and has a long and storied career w/ the lakers, what harm would it have done. Now you run the risk of it appearing like a pure power play from the ownership/management standpoint. Isnt it all about team w/ the lakers? I guess daddy`s boy buss wanted to show all that he`s got the most toys and he wears big boy diapers now. Brown is an excellent coach, and may mesh well w/ kobe andothers, but a little humility from the front office never hurt anyone.

Since: Mar 29, 2011
Posted on: May 30, 2011 1:55 pm

Buss: Kobe should have been consulted on coach

Great comment Cool

Since: Sep 25, 2006
Posted on: May 30, 2011 1:53 pm

Buss: Kobe should have been consulted on coach

Oh boohoo. The billionaire owner is sniveling to the millionaire athlete cuz he might've hurt is feelings. I think Kobe got railroaded on the bogus rape thing (the woman was a nuttjob), but why is this even a story? Gimmie a break, just play already. The biggest travesty is that they hired a cr*ppy retread coach, just like Houston did with McHale. Los Angeles is on the way down, big time.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or