Tom Thibodeau is a coach that focuses on something the Lakers never had under Mike D’Antoni, Defense. Thibodeau is one of the best defensive minds in the game today and his focus on that will be welcomed with open arms in Los Angeles. Thibodeau knows how to make a team play together and play as a single unit, he’s well respected and definitely has the respect from his players in Chicago. According to NBA.com, in Thibodeau’s first season in Chicago they finished the year ranked first in the NBA in opponent field goal percentage (.430), first in opponent three-point field goal percentage (.326), first in opponent rebounds per game (38.4), first in rebound margin (plus-5.7), second in point differential (plus-7.3), second in opponent points per game (91.3), second in opponent assists per game (19.0), second in the NBA in rebounds per game (44.2) and fifth in blocks per game (5.71). These numbers speak volumes for Thibodeau’s defensive coaching prowess and show just how lock-down his team has been on the defensive side of the ball. Being able to lock down opposing teams and keep them from scoring is paramount to a successful team in the NBA. Defense wins championships.
Thibodeau may only have four years of head coaching experience under his belt, but those four years have been quite successful despite not making it to the NBA Finals. Thibodeau has also not had point guard Derrick Rose the past two seasons due to career-threatening knee injuries, something that would make most teams give up and maybe not even make playoffs. Thibodeau’s Bulls this year were counted out after Rose went down, and yet they still managed to finish fourth in the East without their star player.
Getting a team to rally around their coach is something the Lakers have been missing since Phil Jackson, and more than anything now, the Lakers need someone they respect, and revere at the highest level.
Hit the jump for why Tom Thibodeau would not be a good hire for the Lakers.