39-Year-Old JJ Redick Might Become The Next Head Coach For LA Lakers

images 2024 06 05T192219.235

Former NBA sharpshooter JJ Redick has surfaced as the leading candidate to become the next head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers, according to multiple reports.

Though the Lakers have not made any final decisions, all signs point to the 39-year-old Redick separating himself from the initial broad field of candidates vying to replace Darvin Ham on the Lakers’ bench. Reports made by The Athletic and other outlets indicate that the franchise has been enamored with Redick’s upside as a coaching prospect akin to Pat Riley’s path from player to championship-winning coach.

JJ Redick seems to be what the Lakers are looking for because he has – a commanding presence capable of holding players accountable, an obsessive work ethic and preparation habits, and the strategic intelligence to increase LeBron James and Anthony Davis’ chances at sweeping major championships. His media savvy and articulate persona are bonuses for such a visible position.

However, Redick’s inexperience is glaring. He has never coached above the youth level after retiring from a 15-year playing career in 2021. This would be his first professional coaching job at any level, let alone leading one of the NBA’s most prestigious franchises.

The Lakers have previously hired either former players with team ties (Byron Scott, Luke Walton) or highly accomplished veterans (Mike Brown, Frank Vogel). JJ Redick fits neither archetype, lacking any previous Lakers connections or much of a coaching resume to speak of.

This reality has sparked speculation about how much Redick’s relationship with James factored into the decision. The two have displayed clear chemistry as co-hosts of the “Mind The Game” podcast, though Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul insisted James is “not involved” in the coaching search.

At a minimum, the Lakers likely evaluated which candidate best aligned with James’ preferences as the team built around the 39-year-old superstar. Redick’s strategic mindset and demanding persona seemingly fit that mold.

The former Duke standout was not the only candidate receiving serious consideration. Reports indicate ex-Hornets coach James Borrego made a strong impression, while assistant coaches Sam Cassell, Kenny Atkinson, and others also remained in the mix before Redick’s surge.

Ultimately, the Lakers appear willing to take a chance on Redick’s combination of potential upside and personal characteristics rather than hiring a more proven commodity. It’s a significant risk given his lack of experience, but one the Lakers seemingly feel is worth taking to reboot their coaching dynamic.

If he can quickly adapt and find success, the Lakers will look brilliant in identifying another coaching revelation. If not, hiring JJ Redick will go down as an expensive gamble that backfired.