Head coach Frank Vogel’s second season with the Los Angeles Lakers did not go according to plan as he was forced to deal with several injuries to the lineup that ultimately resulted in a first-round exit.
Throughout the 2020-21 season, Vogel’s rotations varied on a nightly basis depending on who was available, the most difficult adjustments being when LeBron James and Anthony Davis were both out. However, he still managed to keep the Lakers atop the defensive efficiency rankings and that in of itself is a massive accomplishment.
Vogel is entering the last year of the three-year deal he originally signed when he agreed to join Los Angeles, and although vice president of basketball operations Rob Pelinka has called him a part of their future, there has been no sign of an extension yet. According to Kyle Goon of the Southern California News Group, this has surprised some people within the Lakers organization:
While ESPN reported shortly after the season ended that the Lakers planned to engage Vogel on extension discussions, and most expect Vogel will return with a new deal before next season, it has surprised some within the organization that the coach hasn’t received that deal already.
There is a multitude of factors that may be going on behind the scenes when it comes to contract negotiations, but it is a little odd that the two sides have not yet agreed to an extension. Vogel led the Lakers to the 2020 NBA Championship and normally teams will try their best to keep championship-pedigree coaches on their side for the long term.
Coaching superstars like James and Davis can also be difficult given the amount of pressure and scrutiny that comes with it, but Vogel has handled those expectations as well as anyone could. He is also a collaborative person by nature and that has earned him the trust and respect but within the locker room and with members of the front office and ownership.
It is hard to imagine Vogel coming out of the summer without a new deal, so it should only really be a matter of time until something gets done.
Vogel will miss Jason Kidd
Vogel also has his own work to do as he tries to replace Jason Kidd as he was recently named the new head coach of the Dallas Mavericks. Vogel admitted Kidd will be missed on the Lakers but is happy he is finally get another opportunity in the league.
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