Bill Walton Called Luke From A Dead And Company Show To Give Him Advice On Coaching LeBron

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When LeBron James agreed to a deal with the Los Angeles Lakers the timeline in L.A. changed dramatically for the young Lakers to become a contender.

The rest of free agency has been the Lakers inking one-year deals with various veterans to hopefully make them more competitive, but also to kick the can along so they have major cap space for the summer of 2019 to go after top stars to pair with James. This season there are obviously high expectations for the Lakers given the addition of LeBron, but the idea that this roster is suddenly a legitimate contender in the West is probably a reach.

Still, that’s the task facing Luke Walton as his job is no longer to coach up a young roster and develop them, but instead to figure out the best way to handle the challenge of maximizing this roster around LeBron. There’s already speculation that Walton may be on the hot seat already given that he’s not LeBron’s guy, but for now, Walton is preparing for the most pressure he’s faced in a season as a head coach (not interim).

Luke’s father, NBA Hall of Famer Bill Walton, was among the first to offer him some encouragement after the LeBron signing, and as Luke tells it to ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne, it happened in the most Bill Walton manner possible.

Luke’s father, Bill Walton, would call him from a Grateful Dead concert to help celebrate.

“Yeah, and he had [drummer] Mickey Hart in the background yelling at me that, ‘The rhythm is the answer to everything in life,'” Luke Walton said with a laugh. “So once I figure out what that means, we’ll be good.”

The least stunning thing in the world is that Bill Walton was at a Dead & Company show, hanging out with the band and calling his son to give him borderline nonsensical advice on coaching LeBron. It’s also hilarious that even Luke isn’t sure what Bill’s sayings mean and he’s been hearing them all his life.

Walton will certainly face a challenge with LeBron in town, as we’ve seen in the past there can be quite the adjustment period for coaches when they first get The King — and not all of them make it too long. However, if Walton and James can get on the same page, finding that rhythm if you will, it could be great for both of them.