Tyronn Lue is rumored to be in the running for several head coaching jobs, and whoever hires him should be prepared to have Chauncey Billups as an assistant, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
Sources tell Woj that teams know Lue has been talking to Billups about joining his staff as associate head coach. They are longtime friends, share the same agent, and both currently work for the Clippers, Lue as an assistant coach and Billups as a broadcaster.
Billups has been considered for several front office openings around the league and turned down an offer from the Cavaliers in 2017. Sources say his interest has changed from being an executive to being a coach, and he believes working with Lue will help him eventually land a head coaching position.
Lue is reportedly being considered for the new opening with the Pelicans, as well as the Nets, who plan to launch their search once they are eliminated from the playoffs. Wojnarowski states that he could be a candidate for the Rockets and Sixers as well if those teams decide to make coaching changes.
Lue turned down an offer from the Lakers last summer because L.A. wasn’t willing to give him more than three years of guaranteed salary. He landed a job with their cross-town rivals and has earned respect for challenging head coach Doc Rivers when he believes it’s necessary and for pushing the Clippers’ star players, according to Wojnarowski.
Wojnarowski also reports that Lakers assistant Jason Kidd has seen his stock rise this year while serving as an assistant to Frank Vogel, and he could emerge as a strong candidate for one of the high-profile openings. According to Woj, Kidd impressed the Knicks in his interview for their head coaching spot and was willing to admit mistakes that he made during his time with the Nets and Bucks.