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NBA Rumors: 2-time NBA champion and former Laker could join Juwan Howard in L.A. as assistant if Michigan coach lands coveted job

The LA Lakers will not feature in the 2022 NBA playoffs
The LA Lakers will not feature in the 2022 NBA playoffs

The LA Lakers had a disappointing 2021-22 NBA campaign, and there is chatter about the franchise relieving head coach Frank Vogel of his duties. If that happens, there is a chance that a former Laker could return in the capacity of an assistant coach.

Vogel led the Lakers to a championship in his first season with the team, but they fell in the first round of the playoffs in the 2020-21 season. He is known for building defensive-minded teams, but could not bring that to the fore in what turned out to be a terrible third campaign at the helm.

The Lakers' poor defense and failure to make the playoffs are making the front office question his ability to bring another championship to Los Angeles.

With his departure being an option, the Lakers will be in the market for a new head coach. It will be interesting to see how things turn out as names have already started being thrown around for the coveted job.

According to senior NBA columnist Steve Bulpett at Heavy.com, Juwan Howard is a likely candidate to take over if Vogel is let go. If the Michigan coach lands the job, there is a chance Rajon Rondo will return to the Lakers as an assistant coach.

"Juwan Howard's name has been floated as a candidate for the Lakers' coaching job when, as is expected, Frank Vogel is let go. But an L.A. source tells Heavy.com that Rajon Rondo could be coming in as an assistant coach should Howard somehow get pried from Michigan."
Juwan Howard's name has been floated as a candidate for the Lakers' coaching job when, as is expected, Frank Vogel is let go. But an L.A. source tells Heavy.com that Rajon Rondo could be coming in as an assistant coach should Howard somehow get pried from Michigan.

Rondo rejoined the Lakers for the 2021-22 season but was later traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers. The two-time NBA champ was part of the 2019-20 Lakers team that won the title in the Orlando bubble.

The four-time All-Star is not the most adept scorer or decorated athlete, but he could have a significant impact as a coach. He has an incredibly high basketball IQ, and could help mold younger players like Talen Horton-Tucker and Austin Reaves.


The LA Lakers' 2021-22 NBA campaign has come to an end

Malik Monk #11 and Austin Reaves #15 of the Los Angeles Lakers
Malik Monk #11 and Austin Reaves #15 of the Los Angeles Lakers

Last night, the Lakers pulled off an incredible win against the Denver Nuggets to close out the season. Although Malik Monk had a game-high 41 points, Reaves was the star of the show. The rookie recorded his first career triple-double with 31 points, 16 rebounds, and 10 assists in the 146-141 overtime win.

When your teammate becomes the first undrafted rookie in NBA history to drop a 30-point triple-double. Here’s to you, Austin. https://t.co/xQQen3Krpd

Although the Lakers won their last two games to close out the season, their fate has already been decided, as far as playoffs basketball is concerned. The team fell out of the top ten and did not qualify for the play-in tournament.

The front office will be looking to strategize to get it right for the 2022-23 season. With the Lakers being one of the most storied franchises in league history, they are expected to contend for the title every season.

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Edited by Anantaajith Ra
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