Lakers Should Try To Poach LeBron's Former Coach

The Los Angeles Lakers have an excellent opportunity to poach former Coach of the Year who is on the brink of falling out with his current team.
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers have one priority this summer: making sure LeBron James stays. Is there a better way to make sure he stays than hiring his former coach who took him to his first NBA Finals?

The Lakers now have a chance to do exactly that. According to the latest reporting by Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, head coach Mike Brown and the Sacramento Kings have tabled talks of a contract extension. This means that Brown is entering the final season of his deal, making him an excellent option for the Lakers to try and poach.

Lakers Should Try to Poach Head Coach Mike Brown

Mike Brown has had a very successful stint in Sacramento so far. In 2023, he led the team to its first playoff berth since 2006 and became the first unanimous winner of the Coach of the Year award. He finished last season with a 46-36 record but missed the playoffs in the stacked Western Conference.

There is no denying that he earned himself a contract extension but there is reportedly a "gulf" between the sides. The Sacramento Kings leadership has made questionable decisions in the past as owner Vivek Ranadive is known to be rash at times. If he thinks the Kings underachieved last season and Brown doesn't deserve an eight-figure annual salary like some of his counterparts, he could be available for the Lakers.

The Lakers would presumably need to give up assets to be able to poach Brown. There is a precedent for coach trades in the NBA. Doc Rivers was previously traded to the Clippers from the Celtics for a first-round pick. Stan Van Gundy and Jason Kidd have also warranted draft picks in their moves to the Magic and the Bucks, respectively.

Brown is not only familiar with LeBron James as he coached him for five years in Cleveland, but he also knows the Lakers organization. Back in 2011, he was hired to succeed Phil Jackson as the head coach of the Lakers. After a second-round exit in his first season and a disappointing start to his second despite the additions of Steve Nash and Dwight Howard to the roster, he was fired five games into the season.

However, he is a much-improved coach now. He is well-respected around the league, has an excellent relationship with his players, and consistently gets his team to play with effort and discipline. That is the sort of coach the Lakers need.

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