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#pounditWednesday, August 17, 2022

Report: Lakers eyeing NBA champion coach as one of ‘top targets’

Rob Pelinka at a press conference

The Los Angeles Lakers are moving on from head coach Frank Vogel after his disappointing third season with the franchise, and they may already have a replacement in mind.

Nick Nurse is considered one of the “top targets” for the Lakers, Shams Charania of The Athletic reports.

Nurse has multiple years left on the contract extension he signed with the Toronto Raptors in 2020. The Lakers would need permission from the Raptors to speak with the former Coach of the Year. They would also likely need to agree to some sort of compensation package with Toronto if Nurse were interested in coaching in L.A.

The Lakers are expected to pursue candidates with previous NBA head coaching experience. Though, Charania was told by sources that Michigan coach Juwan Howard may also get a look. He interviewed for the position in 2019 before the Lakers hired Vogel.

Nurse just finished his fourth season as the head coach in Toronto. He led the team to an NBA title in 2019 and has quickly established himself as one of the most respected coaches in the league. You can understand the appeal for L.A. as they try to capitalize on the LeBron James window.

We know of one other former champion coach that the Lakers may target, so that is clearly one of the themes of their search. LeBron will obviously be given plenty of input throughout the search.

Photo: Sep 27, 2019; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka answers a question during the Lakers media day at the UCLA Health Training Center in El Segundo, CA. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

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