The Los Angeles Lakers, off to a disappointing 1-4 start despite two big offseason acquisitions, have reportedly fired head coach Mike Brown.
"Mike just called saying he was relieved of his duties," his agent, Warren LeGarie, told Yahoo! Sports.
The NBA club has not yet confirmed the report, although sources close to the team told Efe that management made the decision Friday morning.
The Lakers were a preseason favorite to win the NBA title this season after signing Dwight Howard, considered the game's top center; and Steve Nash, a two-time MVP who is still regarded as an upper echelon point guard.
Those players added to an already formidable line-up consisting of future Hall of Famer Kobe Bryant, four-time All Star forward Pau Gasol and Ron Artest, the 2004 NBA Defensive Player of the Year.
Assistant coach Bernie Bickerstaff will take Brown's place on an interim basis, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Names being mentioned as possible full-time replacements for Brown include Mike D'Antoni, who coached Nash during part of his tenure with the Phoenix Suns; former long-time Utah Jazz coach Jerry Sloan; and even Phil Jackson, who coached the Lakers to five NBA titles between 2000 and 2010.
Injuries have hampered the Lakers at the start of the season, with Nash expected to be out until December with a leg injury and Howard still rounding into form after undergoing back surgery in the offseason.
Bryant, despite battling a foot injury, has had a hot start to the season, averaging 27.2 points - second-best in the NBA - on 56 percent shooting from the field.
The team also has had to adjust to the Princeton offense that Brown instituted at the start of the season, a read-and-react system that puts a premium on ball movement and was designed to ease Bryant's offensive burden.
The Lakers, currently dead last in the Western Conference, host the Golden State Warriors Friday night. EFE