Larry Mantle |

Lakers coach Phil Jackson makes my evening




Perhaps you've heard the great news that the NBA's most successful coach in history will return for another season here in Los Angeles. Laker fans have reason to celebrate, as Jackson will lead the team toward a third straight NBA title.

Now let's hope we can get Derek Fisher and Shannon Brown back for another run. Both are unrestricted free agents, though it's clear the Lakers would like both of them to stay.

In this city, where our interests are so diffuse, it's nice to know the Lakers will be poised for another run deep into the playoffs.

I've never seen so much interest in an NBA off-season as this one. Free agent Lebron James' decision on a team obviously tops the list, but there's also great interest in stars Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh, Joe Johnson, and Dirk Nowitzki.

On the coaching front we now have Phil here, former Laker Byron Scott in Cleveland, and a vacant seat in the Clipper offices in Playa Vista. It seems everyone's out looking for a high profile coach but the Clippers. Coaching reputation doesn't win games, but it sure helps when you're trying to attract free agent players or establish a team's credibility with fans. Whoever takes the job leading L. A.'s second NBA team will have his work cut out, despite the Clippers' talent. One of these years the team that looks good on paper going into the season will finally look good on the court.