The Los Angeles Lakers have already hired a few assistant coaches to join the staff of new head coach Frank Vogel, including Jason Kidd and Lionel Hollins. But while most assumed that those names all being mostly defensive-oriented would indicate the Lakers would go after an offensive assistant next, the team is instead doubling down on defense, targeting one of the most well-renowned defensive minds in the league today: Ron Adams, who Adrian Wojnarowski and Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN are reporting the Lakers are trying to recruit:
Reporting w/ @wojespn: The Lakers received permission from Golden State to talk to assistant Ron Adams about a role on Frank Vogel's staff, league sources tell ESPN. It’s unclear Adams' level of interest but Lakers could make case more compelling with significant financial offer.— Ohm Youngmisuk (@NotoriousOHM) June 22, 2019
The Lakers receiving permission to talk to Adams hardly means this is a done deal, but it does mean this team really wants to be as stout defensively as possible. Adams is known to be the architect of the Warriors’ defense, the professorial tactician that pioneered the scheme that — along with the rise of Draymond Green as a do-it-all destroyer on that end — helped transform Golden State from first-round out to league juggernaut. For his efforts, he was named as the NBA’s top assistant for four years in a row, from 2015-2018.
For more on Adams, this New York Times profile of him is worth a read, with insight into his basketball philosophies and coaching style. But in short, the Lakers asking for permission to talk to Adams is evidence that they’re intent on building the best coaching staff possible for Vogel. An offensive specialist would seem to be the logical next target, but it’s impossible to criticize chasing one of the best defensive minds in the league when given the opportunity.
But while hiring Adams would be a coup, it remains to be seen if the Lakers can actually lure him, or if this will just lead to the Warriors giving him a raise to stay. Still, the Lakers can’t know until they try, and this would seem to be an attempt worth making. We’ll see if they can pull it off, but the idea of Adams figuring out a way to build the best defense possible around Anthony Davis is an exciting prospect.