Lakers VP Jerry West and GM Mitch Kupchak spoke with former Bulls coach Phil Jackson by telephone yesterday. The Lakers reportedly have offered a four-year, $24 million deal to coach the team.
"It was our first actual contact with him," team spokesman John Black said. "The conversation went very well. There is no deal done, but we're hopeful that we can get something done."
Black said that Lakers owner Jerry Buss, West and Kupchak "like him very much and we hope to come to an agreement with him."
An announcement is expected this week.
OLD-TIME NOMINEES: Grady Lewis, who invented the low-cut canvas basketball sneaker, and Fred Zollner, who helped lead the pro game into the modern age, have been nominated to the Basketball Hall of Fame.
Lewis played with the pre-NBA Basketball Association of America champions, the Baltimore Bullets, in 1948. In the 1950s, as a salesman for Converse, he experimented by cutting the tops off high-cut sneakers for the Harlem Globetrotters. The result was his low-cut sneaker in the oxford style.
Zollner owned the Fort Wayne Pistons when they captured National Basketball League championships in 1944 and 1945.
The Hall of Fame named Lewis and Zollner as veteran nominees yesterday. Others announced earlier are Kevin McHale, Dennis Johnson, Jo Jo White, Wayne Embry, Bob McAdoo, John Thompson, Maurice Cheeks, Gus Johnson, Sidney Moncrief, Chet Walker, Jim Phelan, Tex Winter and Morgan Wootten.
MAGIC WAIVES WILKINS: Nine-time all-star F Dominique Wilkins, 39, was waived after appearing in 27 games and averaging five points for the Magic this season.