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One more coaching candidate into the pool?

4/19/2011

Brian Shaw has for a while -- through a combination of his own attributes, the belief he comes Kobe Bryant approved, and a lack of high-end competition (Byron Scott is in Cleveland, Nate McMillan re-upped in Portland, and so on) -- been seen as L.A.'s coach-in-waiting.

He probably still is, but news out of Houston on Monday could change the equation, as noted in this post from Silver Screen and Roll's C.A. Clark:

"...So the Lakers will be in a bit of a bind if Phil Jackson really does call it quits. The roster cries out for continuity of system, while the situation cries out for a coach who can command the respect of a star-studded group. There is no candidate who can provide both. But, thanks to a rather unexpected turn of events, there is now someone who comes close. The race to replace Phil Jackson has a new dark horse, except this dark horse might have been the race's favorite if we knew he'd be involved. His name is Rick Adelman..."

Clark lays out a variety of reasons why Adelman is a credible candidate, and it's hard to argue. My gut still says Shaw gets the job, but at the same time I absolutely believe there will be an element of support for a head coach with more experience. As Clark notes, it's much easier to get behind a newbie, even one as well groomed as Shaw, in theory than in practice.

It's also very possible this year's results could impact next season's hire. Hard to picture the Lakers changing systems after a three-peat, but what if they lose?