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The Los Angeles Lakers are being patient in their search for a new head coach after parting ways with Darvin Ham following a first-round playoff exit to the Denver Nuggets. There’s been a slew of candidates reported as possible replacements, from bigger names like JJ Redick and Sam Cassell, to lesser-known assistant coaches like Micah Nori and David Adelman. And while one might assume that franchise centerpiece LeBron James would be involved in the process of finding the perfect fit, he’s actually been hands off, per a recent report.

“I’m told LeBron James is not involved in the Lakers head coaching search,” Shams Charania said Monday. “LeBron James has made it clear this is the organization’s decision.”

Charania went on to say that James hasn’t had conversations with the Lakers front office about the possibility of hiring Redick as the next head coach. Redick has no prior coaching experience, but he recently started a podcast with James where the two go into great detail about breaking down basketball on a deeper level. James’ agent, Rich Paul, told Charania that while the two do a podcast together, that doesn’t mean LeBron necessarily wants Redick as the coach of the Lakers.

While James may not be turning in a list of candidates that he prefers for the job, surely how the new coach would mesh with James is a consideration for the front office. It’s also not a guarantee that LeBron returns to the Lakers next season as he has the option to enter free agency this summer.

The Lakers have received approval to interview a slew of assistant coaches including Cassell, Nori, Adelman and James Borrego. In this initial wave of interviews, the Lakers are wanting to target coaches that they’re less familiar with, and then will circle back to other ex-head coaches before making a decision. 

It’s unclear exactly what type of coach L.A. is looking for in its hire, but whoever gets the job will immediately be met with tons of pressure to succeed. With James’ player option looming this summer, a draft where the Lakers could possibly draft Bronny James, and a roster that clearly needs upgrades, finding the next head coach is just Step 1 in a series of offseason decisions that the Lakers need to make.

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