Since the Los Angeles Lakers cut ties with former head coach Luke Walton, their search for a replacement has primarily centered around Philadelphia 76ers assistant Monty Williams and LeBron James’ former coach with the Cleveland Cavaliers, Tyronn Lue.
Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka was said to have held individual meetings with both Lue and Williams, and follow-ups were expected. L.A. reportedly interviewed Miami Heat assistant Juwan Howard and Jason Kidd as well.
All indications point to Pelinka leading the coaching search in the wake of Magic Johnson abruptly stepping down as president of basketball operations. Though, Pelinka was joined by Kurt Rambis in the meeting with Kidd.
Rambis returned to the Lakers franchise as a senior basketball advisor last September. His wife Linda is a special projects manager for the Lakers and a close confidant of team owner Jeanie Buss.
As the Lakers are set to meet with Williams for a second time, Jeanie and Pelinka are expected to be joined by brothers Joey and Jesse Buss, the Rambis couple, and Lakers chief operating officer Tim Harris, per Bill Oram of The Athletic:
The Lakers are sending a big contingent to Philadelphia today for Monty Williams' second interview, sources tell @sam_amick and me. Rob Pelinka and Jeanie Buss leading a group that also includes Joey Buss, Jesse Buss, Kurt and Linda Rambis, and COO Tim Harris.
— Bill Oram (@billoram) April 25, 2019
Jesse’s inclusion is noteworthy in the sense that he’s developed a strong reputation for his work as director of scouting. A similar sentiment applies to Joey, who has succeeded with running the Lakers’ G League affiliate.
Meanwhile, Kurt’s continued presence at meetings suggests potentially growing into a larger role. That’s also believed to apply to Pelinka, as the Lakers may not hire a replacement for Johnson.