The Los Angeles Lakers had at least one open seat on their bench to fill with the departure of Jason Kidd to lead the Dallas Mavericks, but it was mostly assumed they had filled that opening when they hired David Fizdale earlier this week.
However, according to the latest scoop from veteran NBA reporter Marc Stein, the Lakers might not be done adding to Frank Vogel’s staff just yet. Former Oklahoma City Thunder and Washington Wizards head coach Scott Brooks is reportedly a candidate to join their bench:
The Lakers have interviewed former Wizards coach Scott Brooks for a potential spot on Frank Vogel's staff, league sources say.@espn reported last week that former Knicks and Grizzlies coach David Fizdale would soon join the Lakers after Jason Kidd's departure to coach Dallas.— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) July 3, 2021
was fired by agreed to mutually part ways with the the Wizards last month after five seasons with the franchise, during which he steered them to the NBA playoffs three times. He was not exactly a beloved figure among Wizards fans by the end, but our sister site Bullets Forever also appreciated the positives he brought to their team over his tenure. Brooks has also always been well-liked by his players, which is a valuable quality for any coach, and especially an assistant. He is also a California native who played at UCI.
And while Brooks has shown flaws as a lead decision-maker, he could still be a solid add as an assistant, and very much fits the mold of “former head coach” that the Lakers and Vogel typically like his assistants to fill after the organization had issues with the inexperienced staff former head coach Luke Walton put together.
There are a few things we should note, however. For one thing, Stein didn’t report that a deal was done, so it’s not time to start fully diving in to what Brooks could potentially bring to the staff. If you do want to do so, however, my friend Cranjis’ thread is a rollercoaster.
A few thoughts:— Coach Cranjis McBasketball (@Tim_NBA) July 3, 2021
1) LA is looking for an offensive mind to add to the staff (YES)
2) that offensive mind & change associated would make Fiz more valuable
3) the 2013-20 offensive optimization data (not this year bc we’re redoing talent grades) on Brooks is solid
4) film time
I'm 120 half court clips deep and haven't seen 1 set yet I'd want to bring to the Lakers, nor have I see strong playcalling to target coverages the defense was running— Coach Cranjis McBasketball (@Tim_NBA) July 3, 2021
Okay here are a few concepts I have liked:— Coach Cranjis McBasketball (@Tim_NBA) July 3, 2021
- Deeper P&Rs -> seals inside on guards vs switch
- Flipping P&R repeatedly vs under P&R coverage
- P&R with screener then setting a pin vs drop coverage
- Some nice ATOs with decoy action to get empty side sideline P&Rs
It remains to be seen what kind of role and position the Lakers would be bringing Brooks in for, too.
Each NBA team only gets three “bench” coaches (the assistants that sit on the bench with the head coach). Last year, that was Kidd, Phil Handy and Lionel Hollins. It seems unlikely that Brooks would accept less than one of the top-three jobs on Vogel’s staff, so it feels like either this interview is about some kind of consulting role, for a potential job at some point in the future, or is preparation for Kidd taking either Hollins or Handy with him to Dallas. We certainly don’t know one way or the other whether the latter is happening yet, but it is definitely something to monitor moving forward as we wait and see whether or not Brooks joins the organization, and what exactly he’d be doing if he did.
For now, just stay tuned. This likely isn’t the last development on this front.