Lakers executive vice president of business operations Jeanie Buss has a new version of her book "Laker Girl" a personal memoir of her life. In it she covers the last tumultous year of her life that includes the death of her father Lakers patriarch Jerry Buss and offers her point of view when the Lakers approached her boyfriend (now fiance) Phil Jackson to coach the team after firing Mike Brown last season only five games in. There's a lot to chew through in the excerpt released to the Los Angeles Times. Some highlights: Phil called me from the gym after he saw the news on ESPN. "That's not right" he said. "It's not enough time for a coach. I dont care who it is. You dont fire a coach five games in." ... So this immediately paints Phil as a sympathetic figure who didn't think Mike Brown should have been fired. But Jackson's a member of the coaches' association counsel so he feels coaches should be put in a position to succeed. Fired after only five games is definitely not a position to succeed. "I feel really bad that I made this mistake in hiring Mike Brown [her brother Jim Buss said]. I've cost the family money. But I had to let him go and we are going to have to continue to pay that contract. What I want to know from you is do you think Phil and I could work together?" My brother really caught me off guard with that question. "I have no idea if Phil is even interested in coming back" I said. "If you want to discuss it Jim it has to be between you and him. I can't be in the middle. The only way it's going to work is if I'm not involved." ... OK calling your sister on the suface may seem weird. But I can understand it. He wanted to test the waters his sister is romantically involved with Jackson and if she says "He's not interested no reason to call" Jim Buss saves time and some embarrasment. If Buss is as prideful a guy as he's been made out to be he doesn't want to call the guy he ran out in 2011 to save him only to be rejected. So I can understand that. There was no discussion of money at the meeting or any of the supposed demands by Phil that were later erroneously reported in the media. Looking back I wonder where the media was getting its information. Someone was talking. Ah yes the popular blame-the-media game. Such a great go-to move. She also says she left the meeting to let them talk taking her "dog for a drive." Sure. So she wasn't there but she knows that there was no discussion. If she said "Phil said" that would explain her conviction a little more strongly. Of course she trusts him.
Jeanie Buss in book: 'Betrayal' when D'Antoni was hired over Jackson
CBS Sports | Sep 22