Tyronn Lue and the Los Angeles Lakers are currently negotiating a deal that would make him their next head coach. It apparently isn’t going well. This mess just highlights how much the Lakers need Lue and how little he needs them. To get him on board, they will likely have to give him what he wants.
On Wednesday, Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Lue and the Lakers had reached an impasse in negotiations and there is no deal in place between the two parties. At this point, the Lakers need to get the job done and bring the deal across the finish line.
Given the ridiculous last nine months the Lakers have endured, they need some form of stability. Lue could provide that, perhaps more than any other coach available. He’s won NBA championships as a player and a coach, and started his career with the Lakers back in 1998. Most importantly, Lue has won a title with LeBron James, who is currently the centerpiece of the Lakers franchise.
Is Lue the best coach on the planet? No, of course not, but he was successful during his first three years in Cleveland. He took over from the fired David Blatt mid-way through the 2015-16 season and posted a record of 27-14 before guiding the Cavaliers to their first NBA title. He went 51-31 in 2016-17 and led the Cavs back to the finals, and went 50-32 in 2017-18 and won the Eastern Conference for the third-straight year. The Cavs fired him after an 0-6 start to the 2018-19 season.
The Lakers need something to build around and Lue is undoubtedly the best coaching option available right now. With Monty Williams off the board, no one out there has the cachet of Lue. Plus, we know he and LeBron can work together.
Lue will get other NBA offers, he doesn’t need to hang all his hopes on the Lakers. But the Lakers won’t find a better coach out there right now than him.
The last few months have been absolutely devastating to the Lakers’ “brand” and they need to start turning things around. Hiring Lue is the first step in that direction, so Jeanie Buss, Rob Pelinka and company need to just give him what he wants and get him on board.
UPDATE: Of course this didn’t work out.