Mike D’Antoni has a ton of upside. He has a personal relationship with many of the players, like Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash and Dwight Howard, and they are three of the biggest stars the Lakers have. He coached these guys in the NBA or in the Olympics, but all three have experience with him.
D’Antoni could be with the Lakers for a long time. Finding a new coach is never good, and if D’Antoni works out, he could stay with the organization for years to come. He’s under contract for as long as Steve Nash is, which is good since they were already together in Phoenix.
There’s also the issue of his offensive system. It allows for shooting and fast movement, but requires a very able point guard, which is something the Triangle doesn’t necessarily need. So the players will be able to quickly pick up on it.
If there’s anything Lakers fans can take away from Bernie Bickerstaff’s interim time as the Lakers coach, it’s that this group of guys is so talented that they don’t need a complex system. Something simpler lets them do their thing. Give them a blueprint and they’ll fill in the blanks.
D’Antoni may never have won a championship, but everyone was ringless until he won one.