The Los Angeles Lakers have hired Mike D’Antoni as their next coach, according to several sources Monday.
The Los Angeles Times, ESPN.com, and Yahoo! Sports both reported that the team has tapped D’Antoni to call the shots after talks with former Lakers coach Phil Jackson broke down over the weekend.
The 61-year-old D’Antoni signed a four-year deal with Los Angeles Lakers, which fired coach Mike Brown last week after a disappointing 1-4 start.
D’Antoni made his mark in the NBA with the Phoenix Suns led by star point guard Steve Nash, whom the Los Angeles Lakers signed in the offseason.
Jackson, who has led Los Angeles Lakers to five NBA titles, had been the first choice for the team after Brown’s dismissal, but the two parties could not come to an agreement.
A former star in Italy, D’Antoni also has a relationship with Kobe Bryant, having played with the Los Angeles Lakers superstar’s father Joe in the 1980s in Europe.
“Obviously I think everyone knows how much I love Mike,” Nash told ESPN. “If (D’Antoni) were to coach, it would be seamless and terrific for me, and I think the team as well.”