The Lakers‘ gradual pace in searching for a new head coach may be a tactic to see if two prominent names become available. In his latest article for Substack, Marc Stein cites sources who say the team is waiting to find out if Sixers coach Doc Rivers or Jazz coach Quin Snyder will reach the open market.
There has been speculation that Philadelphia might part with Rivers if the team can’t get past Miami in its second-round series. Rivers has a checkered playoff history and recently came under fire for leaving Joel Embiid in the close-out game against Toronto with a 29-point lead. The star center was hit with an inadvertent elbow, fracturing his orbital bone and placing him in the concussion protocol, which forced him to miss the first two games against the Heat.
Rivers still has three seasons and $24MM remaining on the five-year deal he was given when he was hired in 2020, but some observers believe the Sixers would consider a change in the wake of a playoff exit. Rivers has a 100-54 regular season record in his two years in Philadelphia, but his team was upset in the second round of last year’s playoffs and he wasn’t hired by current president of basketball operations Daryl Morey.
Snyder has one year left on his contract with the Jazz. Utah is expected to be ready for changes after a first-round elimination, though if a coaching change is among them, it may be instigated by Snyder rather than by the team. He has spent eight seasons with the Jazz, compiling a 372-264 record. There have also been rumors that the Hornets would also consider Snyder in their coaching search if he becomes available.
The Lakers have been without a head coach since dismissing Frank Vogel on April 11. Former Warriors coach Mark Jackson, former Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts, Bucks assistant Darvin Ham and Raptors assistant Adrian Griffin have all interviewed for the position.