Byron Scott was the head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers during the worst two-season run in franchise history. After finishing with a combined overall record of 38-126, the Lakers made a coaching change.
However, Scott was shocked that the Lakers no longer wanted him as their head coach.
“I was ‘blindsided’ by it, I figured I at least had another year to get this thing turned around, and I was preparing for that and looking forward to next year,” Byron Scott said on ESPN’s The Jump. “And then boom, that happened, and I said, ‘Wow.'”
Now out of a job, Scott is making his case to be an NBA coach once again. He’s been a head coach four times: With the New Jersey Nets from 2000 to 2004, the New Orleans Hornets from 2004 to 2009, the Cleveland Cavaliers from 2010 to 2013, and his most recent two-season stint with the Lakers. He won the NBA Coach of the Year award with New Orleans in 2008 and owns a 454-647 (.412 winning percentage) overall record.
Scott has made it to the NBA Playoffs four times, having lost in the finals twice, conference semifinals once, and first round once. Yet even though he’s never won a title, Scott still thinks he deserves another chance.
“Do I want to coach back again in the NBA? Absolutely,” Scott said on the Rich Eisen Show. “Because No. 1 I think I’m a great coach and I can get the job done and I want an opportunity at it.”
It’s important to keep in mind that in Los Angeles, Scott didn’t necessarily have a team built to win in a star-studded league. Outside of Kobe Bryant, the Lakers relied mostly on young stars such as D’Angelo Russell and Julius Randle.
However, it doesn’t matter whether the roster was built for success or not. Scott, who also played 10 seasons for the Lakers himself, still led his team to its worst two seasons ever.
“For me, to be honest with you, it’s like it’s forgotten, it’s over with. I’m still a guy that’s going to bleed purple and gold. I love the Laker organization and want them to do extremely well,” Scott said.
Just a couple days after Scott was let go, former Laker and Golden State Warriors assistant coach Luke Walton was hired to take his place.
“I love Luke Walton,” Scott said. “I think Luke’s a great guy. I had a chance to coach Luke in Cleveland, and I think Luke will be a very good coach in this league.”
Now time will tell if Scott will ever have the opportunity to coach against Walton and prove the Lakers made a bad decision.