Rob Pelinka appears to be running Lakers now
When Magic Johnson abruptly stepped down as president of basketball operations for the Los Angeles Lakers, there were questions about what would happen with the rest of the front office. For now, we seem to have the answer: Rob Pelinka is running things.
Pelinka appears to be in charge of the Lakers and handling the team’s direction absent a president of basketball operations. As Dave McMenamin pointed out, Pelinka was the one who issued a statement on behalf of the team thanking Luke Walton for his service as the team’s head coach.
Rob Pelinka issued this statement on behalf of the Lakers: “We would like to thank Luke for his dedicated service over the last three years. We wish Luke and his family the best of luck moving forward.” When Magic Johnson resigned, it was Jeanie Buss issuing the statement.
— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) April 12, 2019
Pelinka speaking on behalf of the organization and deciding to fire the coach seems to show pretty clearly that he is in charge. To that end, Ramona Shelburne says he will run the team’s head coaching search.
Pelinka will run the Lakers coaching search. As @wojespn reported Ty Lue is one of the leading candidates. The expectation is they will talk to others, too, though.
— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) April 12, 2019
If the Lakers were planning to swing for the fences and bring in a new president of basketball operations to replace Magic, that person might want to choose their own GM and head coach. Instead, it seems Pelinka is getting the green light to move forward in these key decisions, making that position less attractive if the Lakers even plan to hire someone for the job. Here are candidates we thought they should look to. It seems they might not be planning to do that.