Lakers Rumors: Monty Williams Could Be HC Option If Fired by Pistons amid Redick Buzz

Lakers Rumors: Monty Williams Could Be HC Option If Fired by Pistons amid Redick Buzz
Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekX.com LogoFeatured Columnist IVJune 6, 2024

DALLAS, TEXAS - APRIL 12: Head coach Monty Williams of the Detroit Pistons looks on during the first half against the Dallas Mavericks at American Airlines Center on April 12, 2024 in Dallas, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Sam Hodde/Getty Images)

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It seems like the Los Angeles Lakers are down to a final two coaching candidates in James Borrego and JJ Redick, but there is reportedly another scenario in play.

NBA insider Marc Stein reported on Wednesday that even though “Redick and Borrego have clearly separated themselves as the top two candidates,” there has been some discussion around the league that Detroit Pistons head coach Monty Williams “could still potentially surface as a candidate” if he is fired by the Eastern Conference team.

While Williams still has five seasons remaining on his nearly $80 million contract with the Pistons, Stein noted Detroit’s new president of basketball operations Trajan Langdon is evaluating the head coach and could decide to move another direction.

Stein also highlighted a connection with the Lakers, pointing out they attempted to hire Tyronn Lue and Williams before landing on Frank Vogel ahead of the 2019-20 campaign.

Williams ultimately decided on the Phoenix Suns at that time, and he led them to the 2021 NBA Finals in the first of three consecutive playoff appearances.

He went 194-115 during four seasons with the Suns and reached the playoffs in three of those years. The 2021 NBA Finals loss to the Milwaukee Bucks was the closest he came to a championship, and the team decided to fire him after four generally successful seasons.

Detroit jumped at the chance to hire him with a significant contract, but he was just 14-68 in his first season. The Pistons are also in the middle of a rebuild, while the Lakers are in win-now mode with LeBron James and Anthony Davis leading the way.

Still, a lot would have to happen for Williams to be the head coach in Los Angeles.

Not only would he have to part ways with the Pistons, but the Purple and Gold would have to go against recent indications that Redick will be the next coach.

Shams Charania of The Athletic reported on Wednesday that Los Angeles was “zeroing in on” Redick, while ESPN’s Brian Windhorst said he will “probably” be the next head coach even though it’s not a done deal.

For his part, Redick said he is focused on his broadcasting job during the NBA Finals and will address speculation about the Lakers after the season:

GoJo and Golic @GoJoandGolic

“My focus is on the NBA Finals. In terms of Shams, that will be addressed once the season is over. I’ll just say that.” @jj_redick addresses the elephant in the room — the rumors of the Lakers’ interest in him as their new Head Coach pic.twitter.com/6OwYnG5iHQ

Redick has never been a head coach, while Williams has plenty of experience. But the Duke product is a prominent basketball voice as a broadcaster, has a podcast with James and played in the NBA for 15 seasons.

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