The LA Lakers have been led by some of the greatest coaches in the NBA’s history. Now let’s have a look at top three of the most successful LA Lakers’ coaches.
Bill Sharman (1971-1976)
Win-loss record: 264-116
Bill Sharman had great success during his five years with the LA Lakers, especially when he coached the legendary Wilt Chamberlain and Jerry West to the Lakers’ first NBA title in Los Angeles in 1972.
His strategies to set up fast breaks led by Jerry West and use Chamberlain as a rebounding defender upgraded the Lakers to a powerhouse team in the Western Conference of the NBA. Under Sherman’s coaching, the Lakers made a record of 22 wins in 37 games in the playoffs.
Pat Riley (1981-1990)
Win-loss record: 533-194
It is not enough without mentioning Pat Riley when talking about the LA Lakers’ greatest coaches of all time. Having become the head coach of the team in 1981, Riley led them to four NBA titles in his nine seasons and built the Showtime Lakers as we know now.
Winning 533 out of 727 games in the regular season, Riley’s success with the LA Lakers was so remarkable. In the playoffs, the Lakers never failed in the playoffs under his coaching. Riley was one of the most successful coaches in the history of the NBA.
Phil Jackson (1996-2004 and 2005-2011)
Win-loss record: 610-292
There is no doubt that Phil Jackson is the LA Lakers’ greatest coach up to now. He coached the Lakers to win a total of 5 Championships and built the famous triangle offense with Shaq and Kobe in what is one of the most successful Championship campaigns of the team.
With Kobe Bryant, he went on to lead the Lakers to three straight NBA Finals from 2008 to 2010 and win the last two. In the regular-season, Jackson had a great record with 610 wins in 902 games. In the playoffs, he coached the Lakers to a 118-63 record.