10 Nov 2012

Lakers fire coach Brown after dismal start

4:39 pm on 10 November 2012

The Los Angeles Lakers have sacked coach Mike Brown following their 1 and 4 start to the NBA basketball season.

Assistant coach Bernie Bickerstaff took over as interim head coach for Saturday's game against the Golden State Warriors and a search for a new head coach will begin immediately.

Brown, who previously coached the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James, was in the second year of a four-year, $25 million deal, of which the final year was not fully guaranteed.

He became the first NBA coach fired after five or fewer games of a season since Dolph Schayes of the Buffalo Braves resigned after one game of the 1971-72 season.

The move came less than 48 hours after Lakers owner Jim Buss gave Brown a vote of confidence.

The Lakers stand behind only the Boston Celtics, with 17 NBA crowns, on the league's championship list.

Next on the list is the Chicago Bulls with six.

The disappointing start by the Lakers, who had the worst record in the Western Conference, followed an off-season in which the NBA team added All-Star center Dwight Howard and point guard Steve Nash, a two-time league Most Valuable Player, to their lineup.

Last season, the Lakers won the Pacific Division with a 41-25 record and reached the conference semi-finals before falling to eventual conference champions Oklahoma City Thunder in five games.