J.J. Redick breaks silence on Lakers reportedly zeroing in on him for coaching job

Mike Battaglino
3 Min Read

J.J. Redick has broken his silence on his possible interest in becoming head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers after NBA insider Shams Charania issued a report that the team is zeroing in on the current ESPN analyst as the frontrunner for the job.

“I would say this: My focus right now is on calling the NBA Finals,” Redick said. “I am so fortunate that I’m in this position and I get to call these Finals with Doris [Burke] and Mike [Breen].

“… My day-to-day right now is consumed with calling games, the 19 different podcasts I feel like I have, my obligations to all of our partners. So, my focus is on the NBA Finals. I will say that.

“In terms of Shams, that will be addressed once the season is over. So, I’ll just say that. I’ll just say that.”

He reportedly has been a top contender to become the next Lakers head coach from the moment Darvin Ham was fired last month following their first-round elimination from the 2024 NBA Playoffs by the Denver Nuggets.

Redick is about to work the ESPN/ABC broadcast of the 2024 NBA Finals between the Boston Celtics and Dallas Mavericks on the network’s top announcing team after he took over the post from Doc Rivers when Rivers became head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks during the 2023-24 season.

Game 1 of the NBA Finals is Thursday, and the earliest the best-of-seven series can end is with Game 4 on Friday, June 14. If it goes the distance, Game 7 would be on Sunday, June 23.

Though the Lakers undoubtedly would like to have a head coach in place sooner rather than later, if Redick truly is solely focused on his media duties, the organization may have to wait a bit before hiring him if that is indeed their intention.

James Borrego and Sam Cassell also reportedly have been linked to the head coaching position, though they could possibly join a staff led by Redick as his assistant coaches. It should be noted that Cassell is currently an assistant coach for the Celtics.

The Lakers have several other major decisions to make, as they seemingly do every offseason. Notably, Redick’s ESPN colleague Stephen A. Smith said he has heard that LeBron James not only wants Redick to be his next head coach, but that the superstar also wants the Lakers to select his son Bronny with their second-round pick in the upcoming 2024 NBA Draft.

Though the Lakers again failed to reach the NBA Finals, with Redick’s presence in the booth and a possible future major role with the team, their fans most certainly will have a reason to tune in to watch it all play out.

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Mike is a veteran journalist who has covered the NBA for almost three decades. He remembers the birth of "Showtime" and has always admired the star power the Lakers have brought to the game.