Mike Brown jokes Quin Snyder 'sold his soul to the Tarheels'
Sweating in light blue North Carolina gym shorts, Lakers assistant coach Quin Snyder ran laps around the team's gym at El Segundo shouting words one would never think a former Duke assistant coach would say.
"I'm a Tar Heel born born/I'm a Tar Heel bred/and when I die, I'm a Tar Heel dead/So it's Rah, Rah, Car'lina-lina"
Or so says Lakers Coach Mike Brown, who jokingly suggested North Carolina alums Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak and Lakers assistant coach John Kuester demanded Snyder go out of his comfort zone if he wanted to join Brown's coaching staff.
"I'm waiting for Quin to try to sue Mitch, and throw John's name in there too," Brown joked during a red-carpet appearance this week at Best Buy for its NBA2K12 release. "It's embarrassing to say he did do it. I know it's going to be heartbreaking news for all you Dukies out there.... He definitely took one for the job."
Then again, Snyder had reasons to feel desperate. He climbed the coaching ladder rapidly to a head coaching job with Missouri in 1999 after serving as an assistant coach for the Clippers (1992-93) and Duke (1993-99). But that came crashing down when he was fired after a six-game losing streak and his being named in 17 recruiting violations. He then toiled with the San Antono Spurs' D-League team before working last season as the Sixers' player development coach.
This will probably mark the beginning of playful ribbing among Brown's coaching staff.
"John and I have already arranged to barbeque at my place when Duke is at home and then at his house when UNC is the host," Snyder wrote in an email this summer. "We will invite Mitch, but I haven’t gotten an indication about whether he will come."
But as Kupchak strolled the red carpet, it sounded as if he wasn't thrilled with that idea.
"Neither of us," Kupchak said with a smile, "have agreed to go yet."
E-mail the Lakers blog at firstname.lastname@example.org