Pacers president Donnie Walsh thought the idea of Mike D’Antoni coaching the Lakers made terrific sense when he first heard the possibility. But like 99.9 percent — OK, make it 100 and unanimous — of folks around the NBA, Walsh figured the pick would be Phil Jackson after the name of the 11-time championship coach surfaced.
So Walsh, who as Knicks president brought D’Antoni aboard in New York, was surprised by developments in Los Angeles only in the fact the choice was not Jackson.
“He’s a great choice and I think he’ll do a great job because, No. 1, he is a very good basketball coach. He’s made for that team, a team with true talent,” Walsh told The Post Tuesday. “He is very clever in everything he does as far as the offensive end and he really does know defense. And his experiences in New York will help him with that.”