Byron Scott: Player development is secondary to winning for Lakers

Byron Scott has been unable to find the right balance in Los Angeles.
Kirby Lee/Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Things continue to go poorly for the Los Angeles Lakers. The team is dangerously close to matching last year’s mark of five consecutive losses to start the season, and the franchise record of seven straight opening losses is well within reach. In a nutshell, it’d be nice if the Lakers could get a win.

And that’s coach Byron Scott’s focus, even if it means cutting playing time short for the Lakers’ young guys. As he told reporters at practice on Wednesday, his goal is to win games first, with development of younger players a "secondary" consideration:

“That is the reality,” Scott said. “But the second part of that goal is you’ve still got to develop the young core of guys that you have. That’s my job, to try to win basketball games and in the meantime try to develop young people.”

He added, “I’m not always thinking about necessarily developing them. I’m always thinking about trying to win. I’m always thinking about trying to win. The development part comes secondary to that, but in practice and everything is where you really work on the development part.”

It’s important to emphasize that Scott isn’t completely casting aside development here. The Lakers as a franchise expect wins, and Scott’s just trying his best to deliver those victories. But at some point, this team probably needs to realize that without development as the primary consideration, the victories will continue to be few and far between.

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