Add Kurt Rambis to the list of those none too pleased with Jim Buss’ comments about Phil Jackson in a radio interview a few weeks ago. Rambis fit a radio appearance into his interview schedule (he’s up for just about every coaching vacancy in the NBA right now) and called out the Lakers’ kid boss’ critique of Phil Jackson.
Buss had questioned Jackson’s ability to develop young players in his radio interview and criticized the Zen master’s penchant for calling out players through the media. First Jackson’s girlfriend and Lakers’ business whiz Jeanie Buss came to his defense, then last week, Rambis jumped in front of the mic.
“Jim Buss was puffing up his chest a little bit and trying to take charge and make his voice heard and make his voice known,” Rambis said. “Some of the comments he said were on the same page with everybody else and some of them just flat out weren’t right . . . like when he said that Phil doesn’t know how to work with young players or coach young players. We’re working with our young guys constantly on a daily basis to improve them but Jim doesn’t know that. He doesn’t come to practice, so he doesn’t see the amount of time that we spend working with the young ball players.
“When you look at players in general, when they come out of a four year college we figure it usually takes them on the average of three to four years to really get a hold of what the NBA game is about and how to play under it.
“Now youre talking about kids out of high school who havent gone through that four year process in college and then youve got to tack on another three or four years of playing in the NBA. So that process is drug out a lot longer.
“It just takes time. We wish everybody would just mature rapidly and get to the peak of their game whenever they are 19 years old but thats just not the way that it happens. Its a process and it takes time and sometimes it takes years for players to develop.
Rambis also talked about the Lakers offseason plans and whether the club would be able to pull off a major shake-up of its roster, as requested by an increasingly-frustrated Kobe Bryant.
“I think a big blockbuster trade will be hard to make happen but there are things that we can adjust slightly in our roster to give us a better chance to win. We dont have to get top tier ballplayers. We just have to get some role players that can do their jobs very well.”