If there’s any person who can save the Lakers this season, Scottie Pippen believes it’s 11-time NBA champion coach Phil Jackson.
Even with the offseason acquisition of LeBron James, the Lakers have been underwhelming this season and are currently in 10th place in the Western Conference. That’s in part due to James’ groin injury, which has caused him to miss a career-worst 18 games and has the Lakers “privately concerned,” according to The Athletic.
Pippen told TMZ this week that 73-year-old Jackson could still be a successful NBA coach. In fact, if he were coaching the Lakers this season, they’d be well on their way to the NBA title, Pippen said.
“Yes, that’s all he does is win,” Pippen said of Jackson, who coached the Lakers from 1999 to 2004 and 2005 to 2011.
To be fair, Pippen’s comment to the tabloid news website wasn’t a dig at current coach Luke Walton.
“I like Luke,” Pippen said.
But Pippen is clearly loyal to Jackson, who coached the Bulls to six NBA titles.
As for Walton, he still seems optimistic the Lakers could turn this season around.
Asked about the state of the Lakers earlier this month, Walton told TMZ he believes they’re in a good place and clarified that there’s no beef between him and James.