Lakers Rumors: JJ Redick, James Borrego, Sam Cassell ‘Leading Targets’ For Head Coaching Job
Sam Cassell, Lakers
(Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)

The Los Angeles Lakers are expected to begin ramping up their search for a head coach this week and many names have already been floating around as potential hires. From former head coaches and current assistants, to some with no head coach experience, there are a wide range of candidates for the Lakers to choose from.

Obviously as the front office conducts interviews and gets a deeper knowledge and understanding of the candidates, certain ones will separate themselves. But even before any of that has happened, there are already a couple of early favorites emerging.

According to Shams Charania and Jovan Buha of The Athletic, ESPN analyst JJ Redick, New Orleans Pelicans assistant James Borrego and Boston Celtics assistant Sam Cassell are the Lakers’ leading targets as the search begins:

As the Los Angeles Lakers begin contacting head coaching candidates and scheduling interviews this week, JJ Redick, James Borrego and Sam Cassell have emerged as the franchise’s initial leading targets, league sources told The Athletic.

While both Redick and Borrego have been mentioned as strong candidates for the Lakers, this is the first time Cassell’s name has been brought up. At one time, Cassell was viewed as one of the top assistants and a likely future head coach, but for some reason his time never came. He’s been an NBA assistant since 2009 and has been working toward his first head coaching opportunity.

Borrego is a former head coach who made great progress during four years with the Charlotte Hornets and was surprisingly fired in 2022 after leading them to a 43-win season. He joined the Pelicans staff this past season and is credited with helping them turn their offense around into one of the best in the league.

Redick, of course, has no NBA coaching experience but is a former longtime player with an extremely high IQ. His “Mind the Game” podcast that he hosts with Lakers superstar LeBron James has given a decent insight into his basketball knowledge and obviously gives him a link to the franchise as well.

Other names could emerge as the search gets more serious and the Lakers will be closely watched as this decision on the next head coach will have a major impact on the future of this franchise.

Rob Pelinka looking for a ‘grinder’ in Lakers next head coach

There are a lot of characteristics and attributes needed to succeed as an NBA head coach and the Lakers and general manager Rob Pelinka apparently have an idea of the type of coach they need to take this team to the next level.

A recent report stated that Pelinka has used the term ‘grinder’ in describing the ideal choice for the Lakers’ next head coach. So whoever winds up being hired will have to fit that description.

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