Dwight wants Phil!
Dwight Howard has told the Los Angeles Lakers he wants them to bring back Phil Jackson as coach,’ a source close to the team tells SheridanHoops.com.
With the Lakers having fired Mike Brown earlier today, speculation is running rampant about who the next coach will be.
Jackson has been coach of the Lakers on two different occasions, and he remains romantically involved with Jeanie Buss, the daughter of Lakers owner Jerry Buss.
Buss’ son, Jim, is expected to be the person who makes the ultimate decision on who the next coach will be, and the source who spoke to SheridanHoops made it clear that Buss is aware of Howard’s wishes. It remains unclear if Jackson would be interested, but he retains a close relationship with Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol — two of the players he coached in Los Angeles before leaving the team after the 2010-11 season.
So while Jackson would seem to be choice No. 1 for obvious reasons, his re-hiring cannot be considered a sure thing.
Jackson’s health remains a concern after he underwent knee replacement surgery, and there is a question of whether he would want to re-join an organization that fired several long-tenured employees upon his departure in 2011 — around the same time that Jim Buss took over control of team personnel decisions from nominal GM Mitch Kupchak.
Also unknown is exactly where Bryant stands on the issue — though it is safe to assume that if Bryant makes a plea to management similar to Howard’s, the Lakers would officially reach out to Jackson.
Because of the relationship between Jeanie Buss and Jackson, it can be safely assumed that the subject has already come up between the two of them (pillow-talk recruiting?).