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NBA Swing: Coaching Carousel Kicks off 2024 Offseason

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With the Boston Celtics winning their 18th championship earlier this week, the 2023-24 season has officially ended, and the 2024 NBA offseason has begun. While there have been plenty of rumors about players in the last few days, the coaches have dominated the news. 

 

Detroit Pistons Fire Monty Williams after One Season

 

Reported by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Detroit Pistons fired head coach Monty Williams after just one season with the team. While some reports say Williams was blindsided by the firing, the potential of him being fired had been in the making for a while:

New Pistons president of basketball operations Trajan Langdon, who was hired a month ago, had been meeting regularly with Williams about the franchise’s future, but the decision to dismiss Williams was directed from the ownership level with Tom Gores, sources told ESPN.”

 

Williams signed a record-setting $78.5M contract to coach the Pistons prior to the 2023-24 season. With Williams being fired, the Pistons will absorb the remaining $65M remaining on his contract. This comes just one year after Williams was fired as head coach of the Phoenix Suns, who he led to a franchise record 64 wins and won Coach of the Year in 2022.

 

There is no telling if Williams will coach in the NBA again, but he will be getting paid for a long time. Williams will not only be paid the remaining $65M from his Pistons contract but is also still owed $20M as a part of his buyout from the Phoenix Suns, resulting in $85M from his last two coaching stints. Making just under $8M in his nine seasons as a player between 1994 and 2003, Williams will be making ten times more from his last two coaching roles. 

 

JJ Redick Becomes New Lakers Head Coach with Four-Year Deal

 

On Thursday afternoon, news broke that the Los Angeles Lakers would be signing JJ Redick as their new head coach. Also reported by Adrian Wojnarowski, Lakers GM Rob Pelinka offered Redick the job Thursday morning. The Athletic’s Shams Charania, Sam Amick, and Jovan Buha would report that the four-year deal would be around $8M per season. 

 

Redick has been connected to the Lakers head coaching role since previous coach Darvin Ham was fired in early May. Many in the media were quick to call out Redick’s relationship with LeBron James, as the two have a podcast together. Several coaches were named in Lakers coaching rumors in addition to Redick including James Borrego, Jason Kidd, Tyronn Lue, and Frank Vogel. UConn head coach Dan Hurley was linked to the Lakers in early June, going as far as meeting with the team and turning down a $70M deal from the team. Following the firing of Monty Williams on Wednesday, rumors swirled that Redick could be a target for the Pistons, but the rumor was quickly dismissed on Thursday. 

 

Many have questioned the choice to hire Redick as Lakers head coach, even before he was hired. Many in the media have argued that Redick’s relationship with LeBron and lack of experience do not make him a good choice for the Lakers. Several big names in sports media have questioned if Redick’s word as coach will be taken as if it’s from him or just LeBron’s words coming out through him. 

 

Redick has no coaching experience in the NBA but had a 15-year career in the NBA. He most recently served as an analyst for ESPN, last commentating in the NBA finals. In the report from Woj, it was said that Rob Pelinka became sold on his basketball IQ and ability to connect with players. With the Lakers firing their coaching staff along with Darvin Ham in May, it is expected that the search for a new coaching staff will begin soon. Some names rumored to be in the running for Redick’s staff include Rajon Rondo and Sam Cassell.

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