Lakers, Luke Walton finalize divorce everyone saw coming

Lakers, Luke Walton finalize divorce everyone saw coming

The Los Angeles Lakers said Friday they have mutually agreed to part ways with coach Luke Walton after three losing seasons.

One of the final bits of drama during Magic Johnson's tenure as president of the Los Angeles Lakers involved the team nixing unauthorized surgery on Lonzo Ball's ankle arranged by Ball's former business partner Alan Foster, The Athletic reports.

"We would like to thank Luke for his dedicated service", said Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka.

Los Angeles Lakers head coach Luke Walton watches the action against the Utah Jazz in the first half at Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City, UT, USA, Mar 27, 2019.

Lue has history with LeBron James, having coached him with the Cleveland Cavaliers from 2016-18, and winning an National Basketball Association title in his first season on the job.

The team was 26-56 in Walton's first season in 2016-17 before improving to 35-47 in 2017-18.

While Johnson preached patience in the preseason knowing that it would take time for the new roster to mesh, Johnson admonished Walton in a meeting just six games into the season.

More news: Former Obama White House counsel Greg Craig indicted

Through it all, the Lakers were 20-14 after beating the Warriors in Oakland on Christmas Day, the game in which James was initially injured.

The Lakers improved their record in each of Walton's three seasons, but never finished higher than third place in the Pacific Division.

Well, I think it's safe to say I called this one correctly. His weird rotations and who he would play in crunch time was criticized and the fact that he was the head coach that LeBron was joining should have been a red flag.

Despite everything, the Lakers went 15-8 in their 23 games with James, Ingram and Ball all healthy.

"He has a lot of great tendencies for a young coach that some coaches probably don't develop their entire life, or their entire career", Rondo said Wednesday.

With the Sacramento Kings now holding a vacant coaching spot, we'll take a look at five leading candidates to replace Dave Joerger.

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