Mike D’Antoni hosts his first Lakers practice, despite crutches

By Jassum Gloster,

Mike D’Antoni hosted his first practice with the Los Angeles Lakers. He couldn’t move too quickly, but he started going over the offense with them and give them an idea of what he expects throughout the year.

D’Antoni had knee surgery earlier this month, so he will be on crutches and pain medications for quite some time. During his first practice D’Antoni made it well known that he wanted the Lakers to change into what many people expected, an up-tempo team.

According to the AP, an in interview D’Antoni said, ''I'm really happy to be here - excited. (We're) starting to put stuff in now. Might take a little bit, but ... we're built to win this year. This is not a five-year project. We have a window, and we're going to try to get through it.'' His words are in-line with management’s vision. Mitch Kupchak, the Lakers general manager made it clear they brought this team together to win now.

Steve Nash might be the piece that holds everything together. Nash played with D’Antoni for many years in Phoenix, so he knows his offense inside and out, but he is still recuperating from a leg injury.

According to the NY Times, D’Antoni will be using more role players in the offense to help plays move smoother. Players like Jodie Meeks and Steve Blake will be a popular pick for quick long-range jump shots.



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