Magic Johnson says late Lakers owner Jerry Buss planned to hire Byron Scott to replace Phil Jackson in 2011, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Scott, who won three championships with the Lakers as a player and was hired as the Lakers coach this week, became the coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2010, taking himself out of the running for the Lakers job.
Johnson told his former teammate he made a mistake.
"Dr. Buss was going to make Byron the coach when Phil didn't know what he was going to do" in 2010, said Johnson. "Byron took the Cleveland job, and he took it too early. I called and said: 'B., you took the job too early. Dr. Buss wanted you to be the coach."
Scott coached the Cavaliers for three seasons before being fired in 2013. The Lakers ultimately hired Mike Brown to replace Jackson. Brown lasted only five games into his second season as coach before Mike D'Antoni took over the job.
The Lakers finished last season 27-55, with Kobe Bryant only playing in only six games.
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- Paul Palladino