Lakers Head Coaching Rumors: JJ Redick Considered Early Favorite
JJ Redick, Lakers
(Photo by Evan Yu/NBAE via Getty Images)

Arguably the most important decision the Los Angeles Lakers have to make this offseason is who they hire as their new head coach after dismissing former head coach Darvin Ham and his staff.

With the Charlotte Hornets and Phoenix Suns filling their vacant roles, the Lakers only have the Washington Wizards to compete with currently. So far, Los Angeles has cast a large net in their search that includes names like James Borrego and Kenny Atkinson. They also reportedly received permission to interview current assistant coaches like Davis Adelman, Sam Cassell, Micah Nori and Chris Quinn.

However, the name gaining the most steam is former NBA shooting guard and current ESPN analyst JJ Redick. Redick was a candidate for the Hornets job before they hired Charles Lee, but apparently is now considered one of the frontrunners for the Lakers head coaching spot.

Although Los Angeles is in the beginning stages of interviewing candidates, the sense in league circles is that Redick will eventually be offered the position, via NBA Insider Marc Stein:

“The Lakers’ search is only just now ramping up, but the distinct vibe circulating among the front office, coaching and agent masses gathered in Chicago for this week’s NBA Draft combine is that Redick should be classified as the early favorite if you are determined to pinpoint one.

A belief is already bubbling in coaching circles that the job might well be his to lose in the interview process despite Redick’s lack of prior coaching experience beyond youth basketball.”

Despite not having any previous coaching experience at the NBA level, Redick has become a primary target for the purple and gold because of his experience playing in the NBA and his presumed Xs and Os knowledge. Redick has openly talked about his desire to be a head coach someday and it sounds like he’ll get his wish sooner rather than later barring a major change in the coming weeks.

While it’s risky bringing in someone like Redick, the front office could ease any concerns by surrounding him with previous head coaches for his staff. For now, the situation bears monitoring.

Evaluating JJ Redick as potential Lakers head coach

JJ Redick’s biggest strength might be his close relationship with LeBron James, who he co-hosts the “Mind the Game” podcast with. He’s also proven he’s got a strong sense for play-calling and schemes through his analyst role at ESPN, but he remains largely an unknown and thus hard to evaluate.

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