Mike D'Antoni's introductory press conference with the Lakers
Mike D'Antoni was officially introduced as the new head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers at 5 p.m. ET and you can watch it right here.
Mike D'Antoni was officially introduced as the new head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers live from the practice facility in El Segundo.
Zach Harper had the live updates, quotes, and quips from today's D'Antoni introduction.
6:07: Overall, D'Antoni seems to know exactly how much pressure he has on him and this team. He is excited to get to work and get the weapons he has at his disposal into the flow of his system. He's relaxed and confident, which is exactly how coaches should be coming into a new situation. If he turns the Lakers into a champion, he knows he'll have proven himself. If not, he knows he'll take the fall. Hard to take his comments from today and not feel better about what the Lakers are about to do. Let's see if that results in a title. Thanks for following with us today, everybody!
6:06: While talking about the difference in pace between his guys in Phoenix and his guys in LA, D'Antoni says it's all about flow. They'll get into a rhythm and find their comfort zone.
6:04: "You don't try to over coach. You try to make it simple." D'Antoni on trying to get the most talent out of his players.
6:03: D'Antoni knows how to get out of anything he says right now that can be used against him later on. Has mentioned several times he's heavily medicated because of his recent knee operation.
6:03: D'Antoni shows film of highlights before the team hits the floor? Everything is positive and fun. He's the best Little League coach of all time.
6:01: D'Antoni says the starters are so good that the bench will naturally look bad. He seems confident that the bench will be good. He's excited about Darius Morris too and just compared Jodie Meeks to Eddie House. "We'll play the guys that can play."
5:57: Donnie Walsh laid out the plan for D'Antoni that he'll get clobbered for two years and then they'll bring in free agents for him. I believe that's the Isiah Thomas plan only in small fraction form. It's also known as New York Knicks basketball.
5:55: D'Antoni in response to the idea that small ball can't win is that the San Antonio Spurs beat the Suns with small ball.
5:54: Mike D'Antoni just looks elated to be back coaching, and especially coaching Steve Nash with the weapons around him. I think we're going to see some awesome quotes coming from the Lakers over the next seven months.
5:54: Mike D'Antoni listens to Motown on his iPad. He's the coolest uncle in the league. Except for Rasheed Wallace.
5:53: D'Antoni says he's tried to get Steve Blake on his teams for 10 years. Thinks he's perfect for his system. Just don't tell him to make open shots, Mike. TRUST ME.
5:51: "I told Dwight today he can be in every play. We don't call plays. One of the least efficient plays in basketball is just a straight post-up." Having Dwight in motion in the halfcourt set to catch the ball and attack the rim is like telling Boris Diaw there's food at a buffet. Things will happen.
5:50: "If you have the best team, why wouldn't you play the most possessions that you can play? Any time the possessions are cut down, then a bad call or bad shot, you can lose." Lakers fans are going to love this guy when the team starts clicking.
5:49: "My whole philosophy is 24 seconds or less. We just have to get one good shot in 24 seconds."
5:48: "This is a great team and city to have an uptempo, exciting game that has a really legitimate shot at winning a championship."
5:47: "Your margin of error is to win a championship. That's not easy, not at any level." I think Mike knows the goal with the Lakers. Win or get fired five games into next season.
5:46: "I don't like to call a lot of plays. I like it to flow."
5:44: "That's the most competitive guy I've ever been around," D'Antoni on Kobe Bryant. And remember, this guy once coached Steve Novak. Wait, what?
5:43: D'Antoni says they're going to have to monitor Nash's minutes and take care of him with his health, just like he's always had to do. Will do the same with Kobe. When they need to win, those guys will play a lot.
5:42: "If we win a championship, I'll get a fair shake." D'Antoni has been around this rodeo before. He knows there is pressure on him for the Lakers to win. Doesn't seem worried about that.
5:42: "This is a big homestand. We need to take care of business."
5:39: D'Antoni says he grew up in West Virginia in the 60s and lived and died with the Lakers because of Jerry West. He hated the Lakers when he was with Phoenix but now loves the Lakers. He also said he can be bought.
5:38: "If we're not averaging 110 or 115 points per game, then we need to talk." Translation: On my signal, unleash Hell.
5:37: He told Jodie Meeks the only time he needs to shoot is when he touches the ball. He's giving shooters the confidence to believe in their talents. He doesn't need to do everything else. This is the Popovich philosophy and something a lot of coaches need to identify in their players.
5:35: D'Antoni says that little by little, the coaching staff will wean in or out new members. He didn't want to come in and just kick guys out.
5:34: D'Antoni talks about how in the Olympics, the coaches don't get gold medals, only the players do. I think he's trying to remind people the Lakers have the talent to win a title and it might not come down to coaching. But yeah, no pressure at all.
5:33: "I think that's the biggest challenge, that we don't have camp. We've got a lot of ground to catch up. The good part is we have great players so they'll catch on quick."
5:31: "Maybe get to put the D back in my name?" The new Lakers' coaching joking about people wanting to take the D out of his name because of defensive stigmas regarding his system. He sees you, message boards.
5:30: Mike D'Antoni says there's no sense in trying to downplay expectations. He knows what they are and wants to get to it.
5:29: "Defensively, we should be a bear." Mike D'Antoni must be salavating about the thought of having Dwight Howard at the rim.
5:28: "It's important to lay the foundation." Coach D'Antoni talking about having to play the regular season before the playoffs happen.
5:27: "I tried coaching without (Steve Nash) and that didn't work out too well." Hello, Melo.
5:26: "I know the possibilities we have; it's endless." That was D'Antoni on the the players he has at his disposal. Clearly, he's never coached Antawn Jamison.
5:25: D'Antoni says he'd like to try to get somewhere close to the Showtime Lakers era type of play. Would love to pick Magic Johnson's brain.
5:23: Mike D'Antoni says he's excited and happy to be here. Also adds, "As Mitch (Kupchak) has said, we're built to win this year."
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