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Luke Walton and Los Angeles Lakers part ways after 3 losing seasons

The Los Angeles Lakers said Friday they have mutually agreed to part ways with coach Luke Walton after three losing seasons. Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka announced Walton's departure Friday.

The former Lakers forward went 98-148 in his first permanent head coaching job. The former Golden State assistant never led Los Angeles to the playoffs, even with the arrival of LeBron James last summer.

"I want to thank Jeanie Buss and the Buss family for giving me the opportunity to coach the Lakers," Walton said in a statement. "This franchise and the city will always be special to me and my family."

Walton leaves three days after the Lakers ended their 37-45 season with the abrupt resignation of president of basketball operations Magic Johnson.

Johnson attributed his decision in part to his desire to fire Walton, who is close to Lakers owner Jeanie Buss. Instead, Pelinka announced the move in a possible sign of his increased power with the Lakers after Johnson's departure.

"We would like to thank Luke for his dedicated service over the last three years," Pelinka said in a statement. "We wish Luke and his family the best of luck moving forward."

Los Angeles Lakers v Los Angeles Clippers
Luke Walton of the Los Angeles Lakers on April 05, 2019 in Los Angeles. Yong Teck Lim / Getty
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