Update on Lakers coaching search: Nuggets assistant still an option?

Denver Nuggets v Los Angeles Clippers
Denver Nuggets v Los Angeles Clippers / Harry How/GettyImages

With the new car smell still clinging to Sunday’s NBA draft lottery, teams are honing in on the offseason and the upcoming transaction period. Teams with front office and coaching vacancies are rushing to fill those spots so that the new hires can get to work, and to avoid losing out on top candidates to rival teams.

Lakers head coaching search

The most marquee vacancy currently on the market has to be the head coach position for the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers fired Darvin Ham after getting swept by the Nuggets in the first round of the NBA playoffs and have been searching for his replacement for almost two weeks.

David Adelman of the Nuggets a candidate for Lakers job

One of the earliest names to be rumored as a possible replacement was David Adelman, assistant coach to Micahel Malone for the Denver Nuggets. Adelman, the son of legendary former coach Rick Adelman, has been coaching with the Nuggets since 2017 and is now Malone’s trusted lead assistant.

The Lakers have seen a number of options ruled unavailable lately, such as Ty Lue, Jason Kidd, Mike Budenholzer, and Charles Lee, all of whom are either staying with their current teams or have accepted another job.

Jovan Buha of The Athletic recently reported on his podcast that the Lakers are currently interested in Adelman and Timberwolves assistant coach Micah Nori. Both are coaching teams still currently in the playoffs, which may partly explain the extended length of the Lakers search.

Lakers interested in JJ Redick, James Borrego, and Chris Quinn

But on Monday, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported on the Lakers’ coaching search and did not name Adelman as a candidate. This may be because the interest in Adelman is already known, or it may mean that the Lakers have moved on to other options (Charles Lee is still coaching with the Celtics despite accepting the Hornets job).

The names Woj mentioned were ESPN analyst and former NBA player JJ Redick, Pelicans assistant coach James Borrego, and Heat assistant coach Chris Quinn. Borrego has head coaching experience previously with the Hornets, Quinn is the assistant to LeBron James’ former coach Erik Spoelstra, and Redick currently cohosts a podcast with James.

Each of those candidates would be an interesting choice for different reasons, and there are likely others being considered, possibly including Adelman and Nori. Woj reported that the Lakers are looking for a “grinder”. This should certainly be a fascinating situation to watch, especially as the Nuggets/Wolves series draws to a close.