LA Lakers sack head coach Frank Vogel after missing out on play-offs

(Basketball news) After a disastrous campaign, the LA Lakers have sacked head coach Frank Vogel after missing out on the play-offs. The team won 33 matches but lost 49 and finished 11th in the Western Conference, with Vogel’s final game being  a 146-141 overtime win over Denver Nuggets. Lakers' general manager Rob Pelinka said “This is an incredibly difficult decision to make, but one we feel is necessary at this point. I have a tremendous amount of respect for Frank both on and off the court. Frank is a great coach and a good man. We will forever be grateful to him for his work in guiding us to the 2019-20 NBA championship." 

As things stand, the LA Lakers don’t have a frontrunner to succeed Vogel and are looking for a sixth full-time head coach since the legendary Phil Jackson retired in 2011. Besides Jackson, Vogel has been the only coach to have led the LA Lakers to a championship in 30 years. Speaking after the announcement, LA Lakers’ LeBron James said “I respect Frank as a coach, as a man. The partnership that we've had over the past few years has been nothing but just candid, great conversations. He's a guy who gives everything to the game." 

Vogel joined the Lakers on a three year deal in 2019 and helped the team win the 2020 title in Orlando, Florida. He was given a contract extension at the end of the 2020/21 season and his side quickly earned the reputation for being one of the best defensive teams in his first two seasons. After finishing third in the 2019/20 season and first in the 2020/21 season, the team ended up in the bottom 10 both offensively and defensively and ranked 21st in the defensive rating. 

In what was their seventh straight defeat, the Phoenix Suns defeated LA Lakers 121-110, missing out on the play-offs. The Lakers were considered one of the favourites in the Western Conference but their campaign has been a big disappointment due to various factors, especially injuries. The trio of LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook only played 21 matches and held a record of 11-10 in those games. Following the All-Star break, the Lakers lost 18 of 24 games with only Portland Trail Blazers, Houston Rockets and Indiana Pacers doing worse. 

Franck Vogel is expected to find a new job soon, especially considering that he has a good record of winning a championship, representing teams such as Indiana, Orlando Magic and the Lakers and finishing his stint at the team with a 127-98 record. 

Also read: NBA: Nuggets sealed the last playoff place as Bucks beat the Celtics


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