In February, Lakers Coach Byron Scott downplayed his use of analytics but has since gone on record, via radio on The Beast 980, that he’ll “use analytics a lot more” this season. On Thursday, Lakers part-owner and executive vice president of basketball operations Jim Buss told The Times, “We’ve been using them for quite a long time. That’s basically [on] what I make all my decisions, is my own analytics.”
One of the big questions for the coming season is Bryant’s role. How many minutes can the 38-year-old veteran play? “[Bryant] and Byron talk daily,” said Buss, deferring the answer to the team’s coach. “I think they’ve got a game plan of how they’re going to handle it.”
The Atlanta Hawks Basketball Club has made hires to its Athletic Performance Team, it was announced today by President of Basketball Operations/Head Coach Mike Budenholzer. Keke (kay-kay) Lyles has been named Executive Director of Player Performance, Art Horne Head Athletic Trainer, Mike Roncarati Director of Rehabilitation and Chris Chase Athletic Performance Coach. They join Assistant Athletic Trainer Scottie Parker on the staff. “The health and well-being of our players are a critical component of our ability to succeed,” Budenholzer said. “Our Athletic Performance Team has a wealth of experience working with high-level athletes in injury prevention, treatment and development that will serve us well and keep us strong over the course of a long season.”
Buss also believes strongly in Coach Byron Scott. “He has the Laker blood in him,” Buss said. “[Mike] D’Antoni and Mike Brown, they weren’t Lakers. They loved the Lakers and they tried their best and I think they’re both great coaches. “I’ll take blame for that, but there was a lot of people, including my father [the late Jerry Buss] and Mitch [Kupchak], who were in favor of these changes. But it feels like we’ve righted the ship. We’ve got the coach, we’ve got the players.”
SC: It’s just from case to case, but you have to demonstrate your values and you have to demonstrate the unconditional care for your athletes that you’re trying to develop, but it’s a process of feeling it out, feeling personalities out, seeing how they mesh, so the athlete can kind of understand what they’re trying to get out of the private coaching, and match you up hopefully with that perfect coach that’s gonna get you there, and it’s just about getting in the gym, or on the field, or what have you, and going through the process. Basically, like what happened with our coach this year, Steve Kerr, he came in — he’s not a private coach — but the feeling out process was quick. I understood what that coach was about, and how he’s gonna inspire you to get better, and you just trust the process.
The Phoenix Suns and Bakersfield Jam have named Chris Jent head coach of the Jam. “It’s an honor to be named Head Coach of the Bakersfield Jam and to be a part of an organization like the Phoenix Suns,” said Jent. “Personally, it’s a great opportunity to once again be a Head Coach and there couldn’t be a better setting in the NBA D-League to help players develop and reach their basketball potential than in Bakersfield. I can’t wait to get into the gym with the team and try to do something special as a group.”