Amid all of the madness leading up to free agency, the Los Angeles Lakers have reportedly had internal discussions about adding former New York Knicks head coach Kurt Rambis to the organization in a role with the front office or the coaching staff, according to Tania Ganguli of the Los Angeles Times.
For over a decade, Rambis served as an assistant coach under former Lakers head coaches Del Harris, Phil Jackson and Mike D’Antoni. He also spent some time as the Lakers head coach during the 1998-1999 season.
While the 60-year-old has never won a championship ring as a head coach, he’s won five as an assistant coach and four as a player with the Showtime Lakers, where he won over fans with his hustle and intensity. However, outside of Los Angeles, Rambis hasn’t quite enjoyed the same success.
Outside of his lone season as head coach for the purple and gold, Rambis has had a losing coaching record with every team he’s led, including the Minnesota Timberwolves (32-132) and most recently the New York Knicks (9-19). The Knicks brought on Rambis as an assistant coach in 2014, the same year Phil Jackson was announced as team president. Rambis was let go by the organization in April, along with former head coach Jeff Hornacek.
Now a free agent, Rambis looks like he’s headed to Los Angeles for yet another stint, but why?
It’s possible Rambis is angling to fill the hole in head coach Luke Walton’s bench left by Jud Buechler, who ironically left to join the Knicks. However, unlike his time in New York, Rambis wouldn’t be an associate head coach as that spot is vacated by Brian Shaw, who Rambis coached in Shaw’s later years and worked alongside (while coaching Luke Walton) while working for the Lakers under Jackson.
It’s more likely Rambis is given a role in the Lakers’ front office, where he’ll work alongside former teammate and team president Magic Johnson. Rambis has limited experience in a front office role, but his two decades as an assistant coach could add something the team doesn’t currently have outside of scout Bill Bertka, who has been with the organization for 50 years.
Whatever Rambis’ role is, it will presumably not be social media coordinator.
Expect an announcement from the team once the free agency frenzy dies down, if not just before.
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