Although the Lakers expect to hire a coach within the next week or two, a league source familiar with the situation said the hiring “could happen within a couple of days.”
Before that happens though, the Lakers plan to have followup interviews with candidates they have already interviewed. That pool has narrowed, though. The Lakers have contacted Byron Scott, Mike Dunleavy, Kurt Rambis, Alvin Gentry, Lionel Hollins and George Karl since Mike D’Antoni resigned on April 30. But several candidates have dropped out by virtue of other jobs, including Hollins (Brooklyn Nets’ head coach), Gentry (Golden State Warriors associate coach) and Rambis (New York Knicks assistant coach).
Scott has been considered the favored candidate after having two interviews and informal discussions with Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak and executive Jim Buss. Dunleavy had a formal interview only with Kupchak. And Karl had an informal phone conversation with Kupchak. It is “possible” the Lakers will have interviews with other candidates, according to a league source, but it is not definitive.
“Maybe we can wait until September,” Kupchak joked on Monday on NBA TV. “Obviously that’s one of the next things that we’re going to address, and with putting the roster together and getting through the draft and getting through this last period, a week or two, the next thing we’re going to work on is the coach, and I think we’re going to have somebody in the next couple weeks.”
The Lakers have been busy with assembling a roster through free agency. Both Kupchak and Buss are also currently in Las Vegas to watch the Lakers’ summer league team, which features rookies Julius Randle and Jordan Clarkson as well as point guard Kendall Marshall.
ESPN Los Angeles first reported the developments surrounding the Lakers’ expectation that they would hire their next head coach within one to two weeks.
Lakers coaching change: The anatomy of an NBA coaching search
Lakers insist no max-level offer made to Dallas’ Dirk Nowitzki
Lakers’ Jordan Clarkson provides game-winning tip-in in Summer League win over Warriors
Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org