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Mike Brown fired: Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak releases statement

General manager Mitch Kupchak called the firing of Brown "a difficult and painful decision to make."

Kevork Djansezian

Mike Brown's days as head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers is over, just five games into the season. The Lakers officially announced that Brown was dismissed on Friday, and will hold a press conference at 12:30 p.m. PT.

"This was a difficult and painful decision to make," general manager Mitch Kupchak said in a statement. "Mike was very hard-working and dedicated, but we felt it was in the best interest of the team to make a change at this time. We appreciate Mike’s efforts and contributions and wish him and his family the best of luck."

Assistant coach Bernie Bickerstaff, who has 13 years of NBA head coaching experience of his own, the last in 2006-2007 with the Charlotte Bobcats, will serve as interim coach of the Lakers Friday night as they host the Golden State Warriors.

The Lakers also announced their search for a new head coach would begin immediately.