Los Angeles Lakers: Frank Hamblen

Phil Jackson signs, coaching staff returns

August, 3, 2010
Kamenetzky By Brian Kamenetzky
None of Monday's news regarding L.A.'s 2010-11 coaching staff is a surprise.

Frank Hamblen, Brian Shaw, and Jim Cleamons return as assistant coaches, joined this year in a full and official capacity by Chuck Person, who arrived in El Segundo during training camp last year and greatly impressed Phil Jackson. So this season, he'll remove the "special" from his assistant coach tag. Well deserved.

And, oh by the way, as Ramona Shelburne of ESPNLA.com reports, Jackson has quietly signed a contract for next season. Financial terms haven't been released, and given all that went on last season about the relationship between finances and Phil's return, the numbers will eventually constitute an interesting story. I realize, too, the business of the offseason isn't quite finished, not until there's a resolution to Shannon Brown's free agency (which may or may not influence the future of Sasha Vujacic with the Lakers).

But while there's still plenty of time before training camp begins and enough lean days between now and then to test the seemingly boundless limits of shrimp on a treadmill's ability to entertain and kill time, having adult supervision under contract to me officially turns the page on last year and pushes through the offseason transition.

It feels like "next year" has arrived.

Brian Shaw discusses his future

June, 5, 2010
Kamenetzky By Brian Kamenetzky
Saturday at practice, Pau Gasol took exception to how the media treated comments (however accurate) made Friday afternoon about Kevin Garnett, feeling they were used to stir the pot in ways he didn't intend. Coaches and players alike paid tribute to the great John Wooden. Andrew Bynum continued to get treatment on his injured right knee, vowing to stay on the floor.

Meanwhile, surrounded by a few reporters on the fringe of all the activity, Lakers assistant coach Brian Shaw spoke about what is a very odd time of year for some in his line of work. There are typically guys who are still working, yet find themselves in the center of searches for open head jobs, whether by rumor or because they'll actually interview. For Shaw, seen not only as a potential up-and-comer league wide but also a prime candidate to replace Phil Jackson when he finally decides to hang up his whistle (or the Lakers decide they don't want to pay him anymore), the process is a little more unique.

He is, at least in theory, perfectly positioned to land one of the great jobs in sports. The light at the end of the tunnel is visible. On the other hand, it's not guaranteed he'll succeed Jackson, and there's no telling when the position will actually be available. Kurt Rambis didn't know, helping explain why he took the job in Minnesota. If a solid bird-in-the-hand opportunity opens up, how would Shaw handle it?

Click below for his comments.

Q: How important is it just to get the opportunity?

Shaw: The opportunity is great, but I don't think just because there's an opportunity means that it's the right opportunity. I just look at the people in this organization. I don't know how many years Jerry West was the G.M. here and Mitch was his assistant, and I'm sure there were opportunities for him to go elsewhere. But he was patient, and now he's running the show here. I don't see him, or even like Ronnie Lester jumping up to run to, like, a Memphis or one of the younger teams that was looking for some leadership because it's a great situation here.

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Kobe Bryant
22.3 5.6 1.3 34.5
ReboundsJ. Hill 7.9
AssistsK. Bryant 5.6
StealsR. Price 1.5
BlocksE. Davis 1.2