And just like that, the Los Angeles Lakers may be the worst-run franchise in the NBA. The aftermath of LeBron James’ first season in the Purple and Gold was nothing anyone expected.
It’s no secret the Lakers are going through massive turnover. Tyronn Lue seemed to be the best man for the job setting the table for free agency and the draft. But, how can you draft or recruit with no coach? At this point, who’d want to be part of this franchise?
A perfect storm
Let’s be honest. It shouldn’t have taken this long. Lue rejected the latest offer from the franchise, so now the Lakers are back to square one. From the beginning, the Lakers fronted like Lue had real competition.
Lue would’ve reunited with James who lead the Cleveland Cavaliers to three NBA finals and won a championship in 2016. Some Lakers brass felt that hire gave power to James. But, who cares if it gives you the best chance to win?
Lue has the knowledge of James’ playing style few in the league do. He knows what kind of players and playsets are best for James. With Lue on board, the Lakers can recruit and draft outside shooters, enabling James to play at his best.
The Lakers decided to move on from hiring Lue after determining he isn’t a long-term fit for the franchise outside of LeBron James. Lue sought a five-year deal and declined a three-year, $18 million offer.
Overall, Lue had a 128-83 regular-season record with the Cavs. He’s been an assistant with three different organizations. After six years of missing the playoffs, Lue and the Lakers are expected to be back to contention.
The worst part is, the Lakers wanted to put Lue’s staff together instead of allowing him to assemble his own cabinet. Lue played 11 years in the NBA (1998-2009) and won two championships with the Lakers. As a player, assistant and championship coach, Lue was truly the only guy for the job.