Thursday, 15 November, 2018

Luke Walton on way out as Lakers head coach?

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Domingo Copeland | 05 November, 2018, 16:27

The Lakers somewhat recovered by grinding out a 114-113 home win over the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday, and those close to Walton said there was a major sigh of relief that the team did not lose three in-a-row going into their Saturday (Sunday in Mania) dates the Portland Trail Blazers and Toronto Raptors next week.

Entering the season, several executives and coaches around the league told ESPN that Walton had perhaps the most challenging job in the National Basketball Association and wondered how he would make a roster of one-year veterans with strong personalities and a young developing core work best around LeBron James. "[The meeting last week with Walton] wasn't even a meeting about that. We just had a really good road win and the group came together", Walton said. On Sunday, Johnson confirmed that the conversation between the two took place, and guaranteed that Walton will finish the season as the Lakers' coach.

Johnson said the meeting was not about Walton's future but rather about how the Lakers had been playing in their rocky start to the season.

"My message to the players was, this is what we talked about", Walton said.

Walton felt the brunt of Johnson's frustration, after the five-time champion secured the coup of LeBron James in the summer.

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"If they need help, shoot, I'll coach them", Ball said. Several sources told me and @BA_Turner that Luke Walton's job is not in danger. And nothing changed. It didn't get any harder.

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. - Los Angeles Lakers coach Luke Walton says he believes he has a "great relationship with management" and does not feel like he is "going anywhere". I'm the last person to ask about scrutiny or anything of that nature.

“Magic Johnson was angry in the meeting he had with Luke Walton (first reported by @wojespn and @mcten) but he doesn't make rush decisions.

The Lakers would squander that big lead but somehow managed to overcome their late mistakes and hold on for the win thanks to James' free-throw shooting and some clutch baskets by JaVale McGee.

The Lakers won two straight after Johnson's meeting with Walton but had to desperately hold on after almost blowing big double-digit leads in the fourth quarter to Dallas at home and at Portland in the wins.

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