History could have been different if Phil Jackson had said he was ready to coach the Lakers while meeting informally with two team executives on Saturday morning.
He might be the Lakers' coach right now, Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak said Tuesday.
"We would have gone back immediately and gone back and holed up with Dr. Jerry Buss and decided what we were going to do that day," Kupchak said.
Instead, Jackson asked Kupchak and team executive Jim Buss for two more days to think about a return after an 18-month layoff. The Lakers waited about 30 hours, didn't hear from him, and decided to hire Mike D'Antoni on Sunday night.
"There was no agreement to wait for Jackson's response on Monday," Kupchak said. "He told us that's when he would get back to us. I could see where he might interpret that as 'You guys would wait for me.' But I thought when I said I had to go on and interview other candidates that it was clear I had a job to do."
The Lakers interviewed D'Antoni by phone S...