Former Magic and Pacers coach Frank Vogel has agreed to become the new head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Vogel interviewed for the position on Thursday and reportedly left a good impression on general manager Rob Pelinka. Tania Ganguli of the Los Angeles Times reports that Jason Kidd will join Vogel’s staff as an assistant coach.
The 45-year old Vogel worked for the organization before as an advance scout during the 2005-06 season. He did not coach last season following two years with the Orlando Magic. Vogel went to Orlando following five-plus seasons leading the Indiana Pacers, including trips to the Eastern Conference finals in 2013 and ’14. He has a career record of 304-291.
Now paired with LeBron James, Vogel will coach a player he could never get past in the playoffs.
The Pacers thought they had a title-contender in 2012, 2013 and 2014, and James and the Miami Heat eliminated them in all three of those postseasons. Vogel won 58 percent of his games in parts of six seasons with Indiana, but the lasting image of his tenure there is the fact that those clubs were always ousted by Miami.
Now, Vogel and James will be on the same side, both looking for a resurgence. This season was James’ first without a playoff appearance since 2005 and ended his streak of eight consecutive trips to the NBA Finals. Vogel is coming off a 54-110 tenure in two seasons with Orlando, while the Magic were rebuilding.
Kidd interviewed with the Lakers last month. The former star player who was a head coach in Brooklyn and Milwaukee was fired by the Bucks during the 2017-18 season. He has a 183-190 record.
A little more than a week ago, the Lakers were thought to be close to reaching a deal with former Cleveland Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue. However, Lue pulled out of talks with the Lakers for the job, reportedly declining the team’s three-year, $18 million offer to coach there.
The Lakers also considered Monty Williams, who was hired by the Phoenix Suns, and Juwan Howard and J.B. Bickerstaff. The former Memphis Grizzlies coach J.B. Bickerstaff interviewed with the Lakers on Thursday, according to reports.
The Lakers have been without a coach since Luke Walton and the team agreed to part ways shortly after the 2018-19 season ended.