View Full Version : Tomjanovich Resigns As Lakers Coach

Feb 2nd, 2005, 10:12 PM
Tomjanovich Resigns As Lakers Coach

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By JOHN NADEL, AP Sports Writer

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. - Rudy Tomjanovich resigned as coach of the Los Angeles Lakers (news (http://us.rd.yahoo.com/DailyNews/manual/ap/ap_on_sp_bk_ne/bkn_lakers_tomjanovich/14179273/*http://news.search.yahoo.com/search/news?fr=news-storylinks&p=%22Los%20Angeles%20Lakers%22&c=&n=20&yn=c&c=news&cs=nw)) on Wednesday, citing health concerns brought on by the job.

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"There are no outside influences, be it pressure from above, anything to do with my players or being here in Los Angeles," he said. "This is all about me and how I'm wired. Nobody put pressure on me but me."

Tomjanovich, 56, went 22-19 in his first season as Phil Jackson's successor and with a revamped lineup built around Kobe Bryant. Assistant coach Frank Hamblen led the Lakers to a 2-0 record when Tomjanovich missed their last two games because of a stomach virus and a sinus infection.

General manager Mitch Kupchak said Hamblen would stay on indefinitely as interim coach.

After victories, Tomjanovich said he would celebrate with a dinner of steak and fries, but the grinding feeling in his stomach always returned by the time he finished his meal.

"It just kept wearing on me and wearing on me and my resistance got low. It hurt my health," he said, clearly subdued. "Maybe I'm an old general that needs to get his butt off the front line and do something else."

Tomjanovich, who led the Houston Rockets (news (http://us.rd.yahoo.com/DailyNews/manual/ap/ap_on_sp_bk_ne/bkn_lakers_tomjanovich/14179273/*http://news.search.yahoo.com/search/news?fr=news-storylinks&p=%22Houston%20Rockets%22&c=&n=20&yn=c&c=news&cs=nw)) to NBA titles in 1994 and 1995, returned to coaching after recovering from bladder cancer.

He said that he began wearing down mentally and physically about a month ago.

"I went from this energetic, pumped-up guy to being sapped of a lot of energy," Tomjanovich said, adding that he takes antibiotics regularly now. "It just seems like I got deeper into not feeling good. Why this happened now and why my body couldn't take it, I do not have the answer."

Tomjanovich said the Lakers offered him a consulting position for two years, which he planned to consider.

He denied that his resignation was prompted by any conflict with owner Jerry Buss or injured superstar Bryant.

"I took on too much responsibility," Tomjanovich said. "I couldn't shut it off when I was away from the arena. I didn't do a good job of having other outlets to get rid of some of those feelings and it built up in my body."

Tomjanovich's decision stunned players and the front office, which now must now look for a successor.

"We'll have to just kind of go from there," Bryant said before Tuesday's 92-79 victory over Portland. "But our main concern is him as a person.

"The other day at practice when we saw him, he looked kind of disheveled a little bit and everybody was concerned. I went up and talked to him and called him the next day to see how he was doing."

Bryant sprained his right ankle Jan. 13 and hasn't played since. The Lakers are 5-4 without Bryant.

Tomjanovich signed a $30 million, five-year contract last summer and replaced Jackson, who left at the end of last season. Addressing reports that Jackson might consider returning as coach, Kupchak said he hadn't spoken to Jackson in months.

After leaving the Lakers, Jackson wrote a tell-all book that portrayed Bryant as aloof and difficult to coach.

After cutting ties with Jackson and trading Shaquille O'Neal during the offseason, the Lakers haven't been close to the elite team they were the previous eight years, when O'Neal and Bryant led the way.

If the season ended today, the Lakers would be in the playoffs as the seventh-best team in the Western Conference. Following Thursday night's game against San Antonio, they play 24 of their final 38 games on the road.

Feb 2nd, 2005, 10:13 PM
Is it really his health or has Kobe run off another one? :confused:

Feb 3rd, 2005, 03:06 AM
I just finished Phil Jackson's book today! It's a great read! It has made me dis-like Kobe even more. What surpised me the most is how selfish all these players are. Also they are whinny babies at times. Also in the book... It sucks to see how the media blows things out of proportion and twists their words... which we see in tennis all the time. It always cracks me up to see the the article and then look at the few things that they plucked out of the Q&A transcript in tennis.

As for Rudy I was glad to hear that he is still sober! Good for him! As for Kobe running him off.... I would have to say YES!

Feb 3rd, 2005, 03:40 AM


Hmmm, things seem to be going just fine in Miami. :devil: :p :devil:

All Hail The Big Aristotle!!! :dance::dance::dance: :dance::dance:

Feb 3rd, 2005, 03:55 AM
Yes, it is nice to see Shaq and Miami doing well! First place in the Eastern Conference!

Feb 3rd, 2005, 03:59 AM
Good for Kobe and the lakers, I used to like them...then I realized what an asshole Kobe really is. :( I bet Phil Jackson's happy now....

Feb 3rd, 2005, 04:35 AM
ohh I need to get Phil's book then....:eek:

I mean there is no way a man signs a 5 year deal and doesn't have a illness that he can name and then quit his job and it not be personality driven....