Tyronn Lue won 61% of his regular-season games, 67% of his playoff games and an NBA championship while coaching the Cavaliers. And as a Clippers assistant, he’s also available for head-coaching openings.
That resumé will get him to the front of many lines.
Lue is expected to be a leading candidate for what could be several NBA coaching openings, multiple league executives told Sports Illustrated.
Mannix listed several teams:
Nets (current coach: Jacque Vaughn)
Pelicans (current coach: Alvin Gentry)
Rockets (current coach: Mike D’Antoni)
76ers (current coach: Brett Brown)
Lue has already been tied to Brooklyn and New Orleans. It’s unclear whether Mannix is speaking generally or has specific information about Houston and Philadelphia. “Expected to be a leading candidate” is a vague term.
But Lue should draw plenty of consideration around the league.
His coaching ability isn’t as simple as his sterling record. He had LeBron James in Cleveland, and the Cavs fired Lue before he lost too much with an inept roster. Yet, Lue connects well with players – including stars – and has shown proficiency as an offensive strategist. He’s accustomed to guiding a team through long playoff runs.
Lue is reportedly especially interested in the Nets, who have championship aspirations with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving (whom Lue coached in Cleveland). That might be a good fit.
But expect Lue to have options. He’s the hot name on the market.
Teams better come correct on contract terms.