Byron Scott coached the Lakers for the final two years of Kobe Bryant‘s tenure with the team, overseeing the worst part of a franchise’s transition from veteran contender to young, growing team in the process of a rebuild. The Lakers dug their way to the bottom in those two seasons and once Bryant’s retirement was official, the Lakers moved on by hiring another former Laker in Luke Walton to take his place.
Walton was the opposite of Scott in many ways. He brought over an offense from Golden State that focused on spreading the floor and playing with space, while Scott wasn’t a fan of the three-point shot and wanted more traditional sets. Walton is also a player’s coach. His style is one that encourages young players with a more delicate approach than Scott’s hard-nosed “tough love” style, and it’s something his players love, as Brandon Ingram recently told us.
There are many that wondered why Scott was handed the keys to the Lakers at the start of what was clearly a rebuilding process, if that is obviously something that his style isn’t very suited for. Scott himself, has his own theory that he told Mark Medina of the Orange County Register. Scott thinks it simply came down to the fact that he’s one of the few people they could hire that had the respect of Kobe.