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Lakers offseason rumors: Richard Jefferson could join Luke Walton's coaching staff

Could Los Angeles' new head coach add another Arizona alumnus to his staff?

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Luke Walton is expected to officially take over as head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers as soon as Monday night, and one of his first tasks will be to finish assembling his assistant coaching staff.

So far it sounds like Brian Shaw is basically a sure thing to sign  on as Walton's lead assistant or associate head coach, and former Raptors 905 coach Jesse Mermuys will join the staff as well. Golden State Warriors player development coach Chris DeMarco has also been rumored as a candidate to follow Walton to Los Angeles.

Even if all three of those names are brought in, Walton will still need to add a few more coaches to his staff, and as a relatively young head coach has more limited branches to pick from. One of those resources are his contacts through his alma mater Arizona, a pool he pulled Mermuys from and could do so again for another seat on the Lakers' bench (h/t Nelson Espinal of Lakers Pulse):

Jefferson announced his retirement following an improbably helpful performance in the Cleveland Cavaliers' run to the franchise's first NBA title, but how "likely" he is to join Walton's staff is a matter open to interpretation.

Miller was the first to report Mermuys' hire, which gains him some credibility, as do his Arizona ties. However, he is not a traditional "reporter" and was recently let go by Time Warner Cable Sportsnet, so this scoop should be taken with at least a grain of salt.

If this rumor proves true, Jefferson would be an interesting addition to the Lakers' staff. Fresh off of a title and the end of his playing career, he could presumably bring the same type of locker room leadership that he displayed during his time with the Cavs to Los Angeles.

As to where Jefferson's strengths would lie schematically in terms of x's and o's, that's not really known right now, but at the very least he could teach D'Angelo Russell and the rest of the young Lakers much more productive ways to use Snapchat.

You can follow this author on Twitter at @hmfaigen.

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