Lakers owners/executives Jim and Jeanie Buss have different views on the exit of Dwight Howard.
"He was never really a Laker," Jim said to Ric Bucher of The Hollywood Reporter. "He was just passing through."
"It's disappointing that Dwight isn't here," Jeanie said. "I feel like we failed him."
Howard, who was a free agent this off-season, signed a long-term deal with the Houston Rockets.
The Lakers' longtime owner had been Dr. Jerry Buss, who died in February from cancer-related complications. His ownership was passed on to two of his six children, with Jim in charge of basketball operations and Jeanie in charge of business.
"My brother ultimately makes the [basketball] decisions,” said Jeanie. “I defer and will continue to defer because that’s what my dad believed would be successful."
She would like to be more involved with the Lakers' basketball decisions, but that's not the role within the organization.
"I would be more comfortable if I understood what the decision process was, and I’m not always involved in it," continued Jeanie. "To be held accountable by the league and not have a seat at the table when decisions are made is hard."
While Jeanie represents the team at NBA Board of Governors meetings, it's Jim who decides who coaches and plays for the team.
If Jeanie was in charge, it's safe to say her fiancé Phil Jackson would be coaching the team instead of Mike D'Antoni.
"I have zero problem with Phil, and Phil has zero problem with me," said Jim, according to Bucher. "Mitch and I interviewed Phil together and then we reported back to my dad at the hospital for hours upon hours. ... He gave the final hammer; we just enforced it."
Jackson was interviewed by the Lakers after the team dismissed Mike Brown early in the 2012-13 season. D'Antoni was hired in his stead.
Jeanie recently said she believes her father might have been able to convince Howard to stay.
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