Dan Hurley Turned Down The Lakers To Stay At UConn

The Los Angeles Lakers have still not found their next head coach. After weeks of reports indicated that ESPN broadcaster and retired player JJ Redick was the frontrunner for a job, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN brought word earlier in the week that the team identified UConn coach Dan Hurley as their top target for the position.

However, after meeting with the Lakers over the weekend, the back-to-back national championship winning coach chose not to make the leap to the NBA, instead opting to stick with the Huskies and chase a three-peat at the college ranks.

Now, the Lakers must pivot to Plan B after a very public, all-out chase of Hurley that came up short. One would expect JJ Redick will return to the pole position for the job after weeks of being considered the top candidate before the Lakers took a big swing on Hurley. Whoever lands the job will be replacing Darvin Ham, who the team decided to fire after two years at the helm in the aftermath of their ouster in the first round of the playoffs by the Denver Nuggets.

Redick will be available to take the job in a week or two, whenever the NBA Finals are over — which could be as soon as Friday night if the Boston Celtics can complete a sweep of the Dallas Mavericks. For the Lakers, it will be fascinating how they spin all of this, because missing out on Hurley certainly doesn’t look great, especially with how publicly the negotiations played out. Perhaps this was all an elaborate scheme to drag out the process (and get Hurley a nice extension in Storrs) and cover their tracks while waiting for Redick to be done with his ESPN duties. Even if so, the pressure ramps up on Redick or whoever takes the job to deliver given the caliber of coach L.A. was pursuing in Hurley.