After the conclusion of the NBA regular season in the Orlando bubble, a few teams have shown indication that they will be making a coaching change in the upcoming off-season. LA Clippers assistant coach Tyronn Lue will be on a lot of NBA teams' radar. He has won an NBA championship with the Cleveland Cavaliers and is a respected figure in the league.
Let's take a look at some of the teams who could pursue Tyronn Lue this off-season -
#1- LA Lakers
LeBron James and the LA Lakers are currently coached by Frank Vogel, who is known for his defensive adjustments and emphasis on a strong defence. His philosophy is evident in LA Lakers' gameplan. LeBron James and Anthony Davis have been given the keys to the offence with the other 3 players asked to play off the ball.
The Laker hired Vogel with a single objective in mind- to win the NBA championship. LeBron James is 35 years old and Anthony Davis was added to the roster last NBA offseason to complement his skill set. The duo has been terrific so far. They helped the Lakers finish first in the western conference. They lead the Portland Trail Blazers 3-1 in the first round of NBA playoffs.
However, if Vogel fails to win the NBA championship, it could pave the way for Tyronn Lue. Tyronn Lue and LeBron James share a healthy relationship since their time at Cleveland Cavaliers. Tyronn Lue was the Cavaliers coach when they pulled off the iconic comeback win over the Golden State Warriors in 2016. Lue is familiar with James' strengths and weaknesses. His focus will be on building a team which maximizes his offensive skillset. Other players like J.R. Smith have also worked with Tyronn Lue in the past. If the Lakers part ways with Vogel, Tyronn Lue should be their first choice to replace him.
#2- Brooklyn Nets
The Nets relieved Kenny Atkinson from his duties before the league shut down due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Atkinson had done a great job at Nets, creating a blend of tactical discipline and youthful camaraderie in the team. But since the signing of Kevin Durant from Golden State Warriors and Kyrie Irving from Boston Celtics, it was evident that the Brooklyn Nets would be looking to hire a coach with championship experience.
Jacque Vaughn, who took the Nets coaching job in a caretaker capacity, has done an incredible job in the NBA bubble. Rumours are going around in the media that if Brooklyn Nets General Manager is unable to find a coach who has won an NBA championship then the Nets will continue with Vaughn as the head coach.
Considering the circumstances, Tyronn Lue would fit perfectly in Brooklyn Nets' plans. Lue has worked with star point guard Kyrie Irving in the past. The duo won a championship together at Cleveland Cavaliers in 2016. Tyronn Lue has coached 2 stars together before, so he would be more than qualified to coach a team which has stars like Irving and Durant.
#3- Philadelphia 76ers
The Philadelphia 76ers fired head coach Brett Brown after their 4-0 loss to bitter eastern conference rivals Boston Celtics in the first round of NBA playoffs. Brown spent seven years as the head coach of the 76ers and oversaw the rebuild. During his time, the 76ers drafted stars like Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons.
After letting Brown go, GM Elton Brand has emphasized on "getting a lot of basketball minds in the organization". Reportedly, the 76ers organization and Brand were furious at how the team got outplayed by a young Boston Celtics team in the first round. To be fair to Brett Brown, the 76ers were missing star point guard Ben Simmons in the series. Simmons was out due to an injury he suffered in the NBA bubble.
LA Clippers assistant Tyronn Lue will be one of the names the 76ers will consider for the head coach job. Tyronn Lue has a reputation for working well with the star players. Elton Brand has confirmed that the 76ers will not entertain trade talks for both Embiid and Simmons. The 76ers want to build a championship roster around the two stars and Tyronn Lue is one of the best coaches available this NBA offseason. It would be a no brainer for the 76ers to hire Tyronn Lue and start the rebuild.
#4- Chicago Bulls
The Chicago Bulls have struggled to be relevant in the NBA after the end of Phil Jackson-Michael Jordan era. Since the turn of the century, they have tried different head coaches but have failed to reach the conference finals in their division. The latest coach to leave the Chicago Bulls was Jim Boylen, who left the Chicago based team on August 14th.
The Chicago Bulls have a deep core of young players. All these players have varies skillsets, which complement each other. Shooting guard Zach Lavine and power forward Lauri Markkanen have shown great promise in the last few years. With the likes of Otto Porter Jr., Coby White and Wendell Carter Jr. in their ranks, the Bulls boast of a strong roster.
Tyronn Lue is a candidate the Chicago Bulls front office should take a gamble on. Tyronn Lue has worked with young stars in the past and is a good man manager. He would fix the ego issues in the dressing room and get the best out of the young guys.
#5- New Orleans Pelicans
After a string of poor results in the NBA bubble, the Pelicans opted to relieve head coach Alvin Gentry of his duties. Pelicans have a roster which has superb potential. They won last year's NBA lottery and landed coveted talent power forward Zion Williamson as the number one overall pick. The teams also included former All-star point guard Jrue Holiday and mercurial small forward Brandon Ingram. The Pelicans had acquired the trio of Ingram, Josh Hart and Lonzo Ball in the Anthony Davis trade.
The Pelicans will be looking to hire a head coach who can hone the young stars and build an NBA championship contender in the next two years. The New Orleans Pelicans will have to show ambition in the offseason if they want to keep talents like Williamson and Ingram.
It has been reported that the Pelicans are exploring the possibility of hiring Tyronn Lue as their next coach. They will be competing with a couple of other NBA teams for his signature. Tyronn Lue looks like a good fit considering the young roster and the stars Pelicans have. Tyronn Lue has the experience of winning an NBA championship and will add a lot of value to the organization.Published 26 Aug 2020, 18:02 IST