My gut tells me that had Kobe made it clear to Dwight that it will be his team right away
, not after the 3-4 more years that Kobe wants to play and "show Howard how to win championships", it would've made a difference, even with D'Antoni as the coach.
That does not
mean that L.A. would've been a lock for a championship, given D12's penchant for whining. But one does wonder what Jackson might have accomplished in ego management.
Even if Josh Smith goes to Houston, it would take an MVP coaching effort by McHale to get that squad through the first round, but in the long run, they have a 3-4 year window to win.