Originally written November 15, 2012 on Purple and Gold Blog:
The hiring of Mike D'Antoni didn't go well with a lot of people and many Laker fans. His fit with the Lakers has been scrutinized even before coaching a single game. But whether you believe in D'Antoni or not, he is now the head coach and mostly likely here to stay regardless of the outcome of the season.After what happened between the firing of Mike Brown and the announcement that D'Antoni has become officially the 24th head coach for the Lakers, there is no question Phil Jackson will never coach this storied franchise anytime in the future. Then again, you could argue that Phil was probably never serious about returning at the helm for the 3rd time in his career. I just don't buy into that idea that Phil stopped keeping track of the team he guided to 5 titles. Phil knows exactly the situation with the Lakers long before the front office indicated their interest in bringing him back. And Mitch Kupchak, Jim Buss and Jerry Buss know this. Perhaps, Phil's hesitation to agree by the end of the meeting last weekend was a clear sign that he's not that enthusiastic to return. So, the Lakers management moved on and the rest is history. But with the unsuccessful tenure of Brown, make no mistake D'Antoni will be closely watched by Kupchak and Buss. They pushed the idea to D'Antoni that the Lakers are not interested in theories and experiments, just winning. How D'Antoni translates that to his coaching is a different story.For him to find success with an organization that doesn't cater to anything but titles and with a roster of superstars and future Hall-of-Famers, D'Antoni will have to focus on the smaller details where Brown failed — the bench and maximizing the overall talent of the team.D'Antoni is widely regarded as one of the most imaginative, offensive-minded coaches in the history of the NBA. His run-and-gun offense mimic that of the Showtime era and, more importantly, is a more elaborate version of the free-flow offense the Lakers are currently running under interim head coach Bernie Bickerstaff.However, Mike has to understand that this Lakers team isn't built like the team he had in Phoenix. He does have the same floor general in Steve Nash but the dynamics of the team is different. That doesn't necessarily mean less capable, but this Lakers team can score in a more versatile fashion.The better D'Antoni can mold his system around the complimentary talents he's got on his roster and the age of his core players, everything else — defense, chemistry, camaraderie and effort — will fall into place simply because the offense will run smoother. If that happens, it's usually because the players are happy with their roles offensively.As much of a hard worker Brown was as a coach, he couldn't grasp the importance of developing his second unit. That was a red flag when you consider how vital the bench is to any championship contending team, especially to a team that has a starting unit with only one player under the age of 30. And if he continues with his tradition of having an up-tempo team, D'Antoni is going to rely on his secondary unit to consistenly produce on both ends of the floor in order to keep his starters as fresh as possible.Of course, finding a way to have the bench perform each minute they're in the game is just one solution. The key is figuring out which combination of starters and bench players work best in different situations. In other words, D'Antoni needs to quickly learn his players and what they're capable of on both sides of the hardwood.It's an uknown but exciting new era for the Lakers that is steadily being shifted to Howard as their new cornerstone. Yes, the verdict is still out on D'Antoni if he's capable of guiding the Lakers to championship lore. But looking at how well the team has been playing in an offense that has more freedom and doesn't put boundaries in which the players are allowed to score lately is a sign that D'Antoni just might do wonders in L.A.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Royals beat A's in extras, win first playoff game since '85

Mark Davis: Raiders head coaching job will be 'enticing'

Fan on Craigslist offers Nats playoff tickets for threesome

Brady snubs rookie Garoppolo after touchdown pass

Cung Le suspended for failed HGH test

FCC Chairman: Washington nickname 'inappropriate today'

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Brain study finds 76 of 79 deceased NFL players had CTE

Tony Sparano to step in as Raiders head coach

Eli on Geno Smith: If fans yell at you, you probably deserve it

49ers players come out in support of Jim Harbaugh

Raiders reportedly expected to make a run at Jon Gruden

FCC unanimously ends sports blackout rule

MLB.com posts wrong story saying A's won game

WATCH: Brett Favre in new nose hair trimmer commercial

WATCH: Michigan students protest, call for AD to be fired

Marlins president: We're not trading Giancarlo Stanton

Heckling Knicks fan suing team over ejection

This weekend in NFL stupid

Kobe: Iggy Azalea has had better career than Swaggy P

College football's post-Week 5 playoff projection

Oregon to don pink-themed unis for breast cancer awareness

Is DeMarco Murray the best RB in the NFL?

WATCH: TBS sends up 'Boom Goes the Dynamite' with promo

Ilya Bryzgalov takes photos with fans while on the bench

Lakers News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

WATCH: Brett Favre in new commercial

Brady snubs rookie after TD pass

FCC: Washington nickname 'inappropriate today'

Could Jon Gruden return to Oakland?

Marlins: We're not trading Stanton

Study: 76 of 79 deceased NFL players had CTE

Heckling fan sues Knicks over ejection

Sparano to step in as Raiders head coach

This weekend in NFL stupid

Kobe chooses Iggy over Swaggy P

Is DeMarco Murray the NFL's best RB?

Ilya Bryzgalov takes photos with fans while on the bench

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.