The Los Angeles Lakers will not be firing Frank Vogel following the team’s loss to the Indiana Pacers, according to multiple sources. With Vogel on increasingly thin ice, Wednesday’s result felt like a nail in the coffin in the immediate aftermath but will instead be another example of the inconsistency that has plagued this team this season.
Los Angeles Lakers will not be making a personnel move at this juncture and Frank Vogel will travel with the team tomorrow to coach in Orlando on Friday, league sources tell @YahooSports.— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) January 20, 2022
Can confirm @ChrisBHaynes report that nothing is in the works with regards to a coaching change for the Lakers after their loss to the Pacers tonight.— Bill Oram (@billoram) January 20, 2022
Akin to how the season has progressed throughout the year, the Lakers followed their biggest win of the season against the Utah Jazz on Monday with another frustrating loss to a subpar Indiana Pacers team, particularly on the road this season. Coming into the contest against the Lakers, the Pacers were just 3-17 away from home on the year.
Not even 12 hours after the team’s win over Utah, reports surfaced that Vogel’s job had been on the line heading into Monday’s contest. Prior to Wednesday’s game, Vogel addressed the rumors as best as he could, noting that the level of expectations come with the job in the NBA and particularly so for a franchise like the Lakers.
The lofty expectations, though, require some level of execution that the Lakers struggle to have consistently this year, perfectly highlighted by their two most recent games. While Frank Vogel remains neither the central nor perhaps even primary reason the team has struggled this year, the nature of being a head coach in the NBA is being the scapegoat when things go poorly.
And while many of the Lakers problems are out of his control — roster construction, effort level, injuries — Vogel has hardly done himself any favors this season with his stubbornness when it comes to lineups and rotations. By the time the Lakers finally adjusted to a small ball philosophy, it came only as a result of no other options after Anthony Davis’ injury and it created a new set of issues for a Lakers team without many playable centers or forwards.
Add in a front office that has as confusing a structure of power as the Lakers do with Kurt Rambis serving as an influential figure with a bizarre job title of Director of Basketball Affairs and the Lakers find themselves in their current position.
It’s poetic that the Lakers, who bungled everything about Vogel’s tenure from him being their third choice as a head coach option to filling his roster with players incapable of playing to his strengths this season, are now in a situation where they need to leak after games that they will NOT be firing Vogel. In many ways, it’s hard to fathom this same group of decision-makers from Rob Pelinka to Rambis and Vogel all won a title together 15 months ago.
For now, the team will be hanging onto hope that they can find the magic they had in the bubble that led the team to a title. but literally everything about this season suggests this team is a far, far cry from its title-winning predecessors of two seasons ago.