Former Los Angeles Lakers head coach Mike D’Antoni resigned at the end of the 2013-14 season following two disastrous seasons with the team.
Several players had issues with D’Antoni’s fast-paced, offensive style of coaching, including Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol who were both vocal about disagreeing with D’Antoni’s methods. Earlier this season, Bryant took a shot at D’Antoni’s priorities, saying he wasn’t concerned enough with winning.
In an interview with Sirius XM NBA Radio, D’Antoni described coaching Bryant, including the best and toughest parts of it. The toughest aspect:
“He has that determination and near-sightedness that he doesn’t see the fringes too much. He sees one goal and he’s going for it. He’s going over you, under you, whatever, but he’s getting right where he wants to go. And sometimes that makes it a little tough to coach him.”
D’Antoni had prefaced those criticisms by saying Bryant has an incredible work ethic, and he’ll strive to be the best player in the NBA as long as “humanly possible.” D’Antoni said it’s inspirational to be around Bryant’s work ethic and his determination.
The Lakers had a combined 67-87 record under D’Antoni, with bad coaching, injuries, and plain bad luck playing a major part in their ineptitude.
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