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Thursday, June 2, 2011

Bryant's role won't change: Brown


El Segundo, Calif. — Phil Jackson is retired, the triangle offense is out, and Mike Brown is in. And the Los Angeles Lakers are still Kobe Bryant's team.

Brown made it clear Tuesday during his introduction as Jackson's successor that Bryant's role won't change under his regime. He said his first meeting with the superstar who owns five NBA championships "went very well."

"This is still his team. We'll make sure that he'll have the ball in the sweet spots that he likes," Brown said. "He has a great understanding of my vision and he's onboard."

Bryant, Derek Fisher and Andrew Bynum had publicly supported longtime Lakers assistant Brian Shaw in his bid to replace Jackson, who retired after Dallas swept the two-time defending champions out of the second round.

Besides meeting with Bryant and talking on the phone with his wife, Vanessa, Brown said he's talked to Fisher and his wife, Pau Gasol, Bynum and Ron Artest.

Public reaction to Brown's hiring has been mixed.

"Everybody is entitled to their opinion, I respect that," he said. "Winning will cure all of that."

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