Los Angeles Lakers are cleaning house and Luke Walton is the latest casualty.There were 4 positions that the Laker fans wanted cleaned up and 3 out of those 4 are now empty. Magic Johnson got the domino rolling with his decision to quit his job so he could go back to talking about players from other teams on twitter. I kid you not, he said this is a part of the reason he cant do this job. Next the team let go of Marco Nunez the head trainer for the team since 2016 when Gary Vitti hung up his boots. Nunez’s spell saw the Lakers finish top-10 every year on the list go games missed by players due to injuries. And with Walton gone it’s 3 out of 4.
Rob Pelinka looks like he has convinced Jeanie Buss that keeping at least one undeserving person in an important position is crucial to maintain the Lakers identity of nepotism. And while the Lakers fans are incensed someone as incapable as Pelinka will hold on to the GM position, the Walton sack brought some relief after it seemed uncertain if he would be fired after Johnson quit.
But now the Lakers turn to the search for the new head coach before they hire a president of basketball operations because that is the right way to do things at the Lakers even if no other organization would hire a coach before a president, given that the president might want to have a say in their coach the way, you know Magic Johnson wanted when he was hired.
Tyronn Lue and Monty Williams
Anyway, the 2 people Lakers are looking at first are Tyronn Lue and Monty Williams. Both are coaches who are very well respected around the league and come with head coaching experience unlike Walton who came with none. Lue coached LeBron’s Cavs to the NBA finals for three straight seasons with 1 title in his first year and has great relation with LeBron James. It also helps that he did play for the Lakers and won 2 championships on 2000 and 2001.
Monty Williams is the other name doing the rounds for the Lakers. He is an assistant coach with the Philadelphia 76ers and was in the past the head coach of the New Orleans Pelicans where he endeared himself to the NBA and to a certain Anthony Davis. Williams is also friendly with LeBron and that might be a big factor when it comes to the new head coach.
LeBron was made the exclusive focal point of everything that the Cavs did under Lue and that is something Walton failed at and if Lakers want to maximize the final years of LeBron they need that to be the system under the new coach.
We will update the story as we find out more, but for now these are the two initial candidates the Lakers seem to be looking at, even though anyone with sense would advise Buss to look for a President first before going searching for a coach. But Pelinka isn’t much with sense. Great at philosophy though.
How Twitter Reacted :-
LeBron James has dismissed Luke Walton as the head coach of the Lakers.
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) April 12, 2019
The Lakers don’t have a president of basketball operations but apparently have strong preferences for head coach already if you wanted to know how much power Magic’s replacement will have
— Tom Haberstroh (@tomhaberstroh) April 12, 2019
The Monty Williams candidacy is a serious one with the Lakers, league sources tell ESPN. He has history with LeBron James as a Team USA assistant and a successful run w/ Pelicans as a head coach. Ty Lue checks the boxes too: ex-Laker, championship coach, LeBron James-approved.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) April 12, 2019