Letters: Lakers’ problems start at the top

UCLA and the Lakers have a lot in common when it comes to coaching searches.
(Jim Thompson / For The Times)

Had any other team been run like the Lakers of the past half decade, the owner would have received the public’s wrath. Yet, from the beginning, Jeanie Buss has received a pass from the local fans to the national media, including The Times. In talking about the Lakers’ complete dysfunction, Bill Plaschke wrote, “Think about how that screams about the leadership void under Jeanie Buss.”

Why under? The leadership void is Jeanie Buss! So why hasn’t she been treated like any other male owner had he run the historic Lakers into the ground? Is it because she posed naked in Playboy, or because she’s nice and means well, or because she’s a woman? Maybe a bit of all. Whatever the reason, it’s time that the Buss stops here.

Jack Saltzberg

Valley Village



This almost makes you long for the Jim Buss era.

Mer Valdez

Long Beach



Lakers: OK, let’s get this done. Three years.

Lue: Five years.

Lakers: We’re the Lakers.

Lue: I’m a championship coach.

Lakers: We’re the Lakers.


Lakers: We’re the Lakers.


Richard Brisacher

Mar Vista


I’ve always thought that, when Jerry Buss passed, he took the heart and soul of the Lakers with him. Never has this more apparent than after the chain of events that has taken place since, highlighted by this last season. Perhaps Dr. Buss, with his unique insight of people, his intuition and business savvy, might have handled the Tyronn Lue hiring more delicately. Perhaps he would have determined that an NBA head coach, an accomplished and known winner in the league, should have been given more respect, letting him select his own assistants or offering him a contract that was at least on par with the one you gave to someone that never held a head coach position.

But class and respect are commodities that the Lakers seem to be in short supply of late, and as the latest candidate gets up and walks away from what once was one of the most coveted positions in sports, all I can say is, rest in peace, Jerry.

Blaine Ziolkowski

Thousand Oaks



Who would imagine that the Lakers would be looking more like Donald Sterling’s franchise rather than Jerry Buss’ dynasties? Managment in dissaray, revovling coaches, an unattractive place for superstars of past or present. In the words of the late great Chick Hearn, “the mustard has come off the hot dog!”

Dean Connor



As the reports keep coming about the next Lakers coach, when are we all just going to accept that we are living in Kobe 2.0?

The greatest player of his generation plays out his remaining days while contemplating the next stage of his life. Meanwhile, no one can actually “coach” him. No other superstars want to deal with his drama. He’ll be with a makeshift cast of youngsters and castoffs and his aging body will continue to breakdown.

Love him or hate him, at least Kobe was actually part of the Lakers family. And oh yeah, he won those championships.

Jeff Heister



I can’t figure why people in L.A. are so upset with LeBron James for having a opinion who should be the next coach of the Lakers. Paul Westhead was fired from from the Lakers in 1981. You think Magic had anything to do with firing of him?

Jeff De Paris

Los Angeles


Monty Williams chose the Suns, a team with no championship heritage, versus the Lakers, a team with multiple championships, the Suns who have no superstars, versus the Lakers with maybe the best player in the game, Phoenix, an OK city but not the entertainment capital of the world that is LA. Wonder why;

Could it be the total dysfunction of the Lakers’ organization?

Jack Wishard

Los Angeles


OK, the Lakers stink and probably won’t be good again for a very long time. But hey, the Celtics lost and the Clippers look like a team on the rise, so I’ll be all right.

Anthony Moretti



Do you think Kareem would take the Lakers’ job ? Then they’d have Lew in lieu of Lue.

George Sands


Horse stuff

I was a thoroughbred race horse trainer for 33 years. The rules of racing are pretty clear. Down the stretch you must stay in a straight line. If you interfere with another horse, your number will come down. Doesn’t matter if you win by 10 lengths. In the home stretch you must maintain a straight line.

Bill Simpson

Rancho Palos Verdes


I have read and listened to various opinions in outrage over the disqualification of Maximum Security. Many have argued that in other sports officials are reluctant to influence or decide the outcome of a championship. What these people fail to realize is that in not enforcing the rules consistently they are influencing and deciding the outcome. Only by constantly enforcing all rules, no matter the circumstances, can you have a fair and honest outcome which would eliminate these kind of debates.

Francis X. Fashing

Palm Desert

On to the diamond

Joe Kelly is like a really expensive pair of shoes. The kind of shoes that give you really bad blisters every time you wear them. But because the shoes were so expensive you keep wearing them, even though you know you’re going to regret it.

Ric Militi

San Diego


Dear Kenley,

I’m a big fan. You’ve showed grit and have been a rock for the club.

However, I’m quite sure your contract doesn’t specify only “closing ballgames,” it’s playing for the Dodgers at the discretion of management.

If you got moved, even occasionally, down to the eighth innining because the team signs Craig Kimbrel, then the proper response of a teammate, player, adult would be to work harder.

Maddox Rees

Santa Barbara


Credit Bill Shaikin for reminding us about the Dodger management greed factor. They win and you pay.

Patrick Kelley

Los Angeles


After watching Hyun-Jin Ryu spin an efficient nine innings against the Braves earlier this week, it occurred to me that I will need to lobby my Congressman to add the Major League Baseball complete game to the United States endangered species list.

Ron Yukelson

San Luis Obispo


The Angels continue their exercise in futility. They are awaiting the return of Justin Upton, the biggest dog in baseball. He inherited the title from his brother, who no longer is on the scene. A subpar fielder and streaky hitter. They could do better with guys who have be cut from other teams. And are they aware that Jonathan Lucroy gives the other team as many runs as he produces? Just asking.

Arthur P. Nelson Jr

North Hills


Regarding Bill Plaschke’s take on retiring more Dodger numbers: I think way too many numbers are being retired already. In St. Louis you could probably get by with Musial and Gibson; in L.A., Koufax, Drysdale and, yes, Valenzuela. The Twins should have Killebrew, Oliva and Carew; the Angels should have Ryan and Fregosi (oddly enough since they were traded for each other).

Too many numbers are retired. It is a team game.

Scott Hamre

Cherry Valley


The cracking emotion in Orel Hersheiser’s voice as he waxed nostalgic on the great Tony Gwynn during the Dodgers-Padres telecast reflects not only who Tony was but also what Orel, Tony and baseball represent to most fans — love of and devotion to a game that transcends the money and hype.

Dell Franklin



Angel Stadium: An old house with a Ferrari parked in the drive

Brian Mullen



Congratulations to Albert Pujols on RBI No. 2,000, a truly remarkable achievement.

Please retire now to keep that lifetime batting average above .300, a truly remarkable achievement.

Ron Reeve


Hope is there

Thanks, Tom Hoffarth, for shining the light on auto immune disease. I have progressive MS. The road to the diagnosis is full of pitfalls, false promises, voodoo cures. Despite the odds, I like my chances. Look what happened last Saturday at the Derby.

Patrick Kelley

Los Angeles

Cover it up

Great to see women on the front page of the sports section again but I think women’s beach volleyball could follow their male examples and wear longer shorts and maybe even T-shirts. Do you think anybody would watch if they weren’t half naked? Just sayin’.

Linda Bradshaw Carpenter

Los Angeles

The X factor

Considering the current state of affairs of the NFL TV ratings, the return of the XFL is exciting news for billionaires looking for a legitimate tax writeoff. We understand that all games will be broadcast only in cities that have no television coverage.

Patrick Kelley

Los Angeles


The Los Angeles Times welcomes expressions of all views. Letters should be brief and become the property of The Times. They may be edited and republished in any format. Each must include a valid mailing address and telephone number. Pseudonyms will not be used.

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