The Los Angeles Lakers will not be bringing back their head athletic coach after an injury-plagued 2020-21 season and will revamp their player health strategies, ESPN reported on Saturday.
The team did not renew the contract of Nina Hsieh, who took over as head coach two summers ago. Hsieh had worked for the organization for over 10 years before taking the top position in August 2019.
When the Lakers won the 2019-20 NBA title, she became the first female head coach in athletics in professional sports history for a champion team in the United States.
The Lakers finished the season 42-30 and seventh in the Western Conference, forced to make their way to the playoffs with the play-in tournament. The Phoenix Suns beat the Lakers in six games in the first round of the playoffs.
Lakers stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis missed a significant portion of the 72-game season with injuries. James played in just 45 games with a sprained right ankle, and Davis’ right calf strain kept him out for half of the regular season.
The Lakers also parted ways with Hsieh’s predecessor Marco Nunez after three years in April 2019. He succeeded Gary Vitti, who had been on the Los Angeles bench from 1984 until his retirement in 2016.
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