Mike D’Antoni Calls Himself an ‘Idiot’ For Criticizing Lakers Fans

Mike D'AntoniLos Angeles Lakers head coach Mike D’Antoni broke one of the most important rules in sports on Monday night when he criticized the team’s fans after a disappointing 117-90 defeat to the Phoenix Suns.

“We’re fighting with a bunch of good guys that played well before, and they’ll play [well] again,” said D’Antoni, per ESPN.com’s Dave McMenamin. “If [the fans] are discouraged, then, you know, find another team to root for. I’m all right. We’re not going to give up. Are you kidding me? Discouraged? That’s not even fair to these guys.”

Lakers fans demand excellence from their team every year, and when expectations aren’t met, the fanbase isn’t afraid to show its frustration. But harsh comments towards the fans are never a good idea, and D’Antoni apologized on Tuesday.

“I was an idiot last night. I was out of my mind. I was ticked off. That’s why I said some stuff I shouldnt have,” said the Lakers coach, per the team. “We have a lot of injuries and a tough slate. We need everyone pulling with us. That was the meaning. We need everyone behind us.”

The Lakers are on the outside of the playoff picture in the Western Conference with a 13-15 record entering a Christmas Day showdown with LeBron James and the Miami Heat at Staples Center. Los Angeles is two and a half games out of the eighth and final playoff spot, but a win against the defending NBA champions might be the confidence-booster the Lakers need to remain in the playoff race while Kobe Bryant recovers from a knee injury.
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