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#pounditSunday, June 26, 2022

Lakers have 1 key question for head coach candidates

Rob Pelinka at a press conference

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

The Los Angeles Lakers are searching for a new head coach and taking their time going through the process. But there is apparently one key factor they are focusing on with all their candidates.

The Athletic’s Sam Amick published a wide-ranging column on Monday that included an interesting note about the Lakers’ coaching search. According to Amick, the Lakers have asked candidates how they would use Russell Westbrook.

From Amick’s article:

Despite the widely held belief that the Lakers would find a way to trade Westbrook before the start of next season, sources say their coaching candidates have been asked to discuss how they would use him in their system during interviews. The takeaway for candidates, it seems, is that maximizing Westbrook’s presence after his disastrous 2021-22 season is considered an important part of this job.

If the Lakers are asking potential candidates how they would use Westbrook, that seems to be as strong of an indication possible that the team isn’t trading the point guard.

Would the Lakers love to trade Westbrook? Probably, but they know that would be nearly impossible given the veteran’s absurd $47 million salary. Recognizing that, they want someone who might be able to make the most out of the final year he is under contract.

Best of luck to the person who takes the Lakers job.


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