Lakers Rumors: UConn’s Dan Hurley Is Target For Head Coach
Dan Hurley
Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Ever since the Los Angeles Lakers coaching search began, the frontrunner seemed to be former player and ESPN analyst JJ Redick.

Redick has never coached before at any level but he looked to be separating himself from the pack during the Lakers’ search due to his work ethic, basketball IQ and relationship with LeBron James.

L.A. has been adamant that their search is not over though, and it appears that is the case. In a stunning turn of events, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN is reporting that the Lakers will target UConn’s Dan Hurley and conversations are starting to pick up quickly:

The Los Angeles Lakers are targeting UConn men’s basketball coach Dan Hurley as the franchise’s next coach and are preparing a massive, long-term contract offer to bring the back-to-back NCAA national champion to the NBA, sources told ESPN.

The Lakers have had preliminary contact with Hurley and the sides are planning to escalate discussions in the coming days, sources told ESPN. Hurley has been at the forefront of the Lakers’ search from the beginning of the process, even while the organization has done its due diligence interviewing several other candidates, sources said.

Lakers vice president of basketball operations and general manager Rob Pelinka and governor Jeanie Buss are eager to formally discuss with Hurley their vision of marrying his dominant program — built upon his tactical acumen and his elite player development — with the storied Lakers brand, sources said.

Hurley, 51, has often described his ambition to one day coach in the NBA and has expressed to the Lakers a desire to explore the full picture of a partnership with one of basketball’s winningest franchises, sources said.

According to Wojnarowski, Hurley has been the Lakers’ top target all along:

The Lakers have had several interviews with other candidates, including New Orleans Pelicans assistant James Borrego, Redick, Boston Celtics assistant Sam Cassell and Denver Nuggets assistant David Adelman, sources said. The Lakers have proceeded with conversations with other candidates over the past few weeks, but the potential of landing Hurley has been the focus of the Lakers’ search, sources said.

Hurley has been an exceptional coach at the college level, winning the last two National Championships. He hasn’t coached at the NBA level, but the Lakers obviously feel he can make that jump and will begin conversations to make him their next head coach.

The Lakers have tried to be cheap when hiring coaches in the past, but if they are going to lure Hurley away from UConn, they definitely will need to open their checkbooks to make it happen.

Lakers target JJ Redick focused on NBA Finals

When recently asked about the possibility of taking the Lakers job, JJ Redick unsurpringly said that his current focus is on calling the NBA Finals for ESPN and then he will address that after.

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