Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Dan Hurley staying at Connecticut after meeting with Los Angeles Lakers about move to NBA

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Connecticut men’s basketball coach Dan Hurley will not take the Los Angeles Lakers head coaching job.

Hurley turned down the Lakers offer, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. ESPN had reported the Lakers offered Hurley a six-year, $70 million offer that would’ve made him one of the NBA’s highest-paid coaches.

The Lakers were clandestine about their interest in Hurley until last week when it was revealed the Lakers had targeted Hurley and were poised to make a “major” offer and lure the successful college coach to the NBA.

Hurley, 51, met with the Lakers on Friday and left Los Angeles impressed by the Lakers, according to ESPN.

Hurley signed a six-year extension worth $32.1 million after UConn won the 2023 title. He has not agreed to a new extension following UConn’s 2024 title. That could be up next.

On Monday, Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont weighed in on Hurley’s status, saying, “He’s going through a really tough decision for his family … We’ll make sure he’s the top paid college coach. I think it’s not about money for him. He’s always wanted to do something in the pros. Going for the 3-peat in UConn is pretty good too.”

As of April 1, 2024, under his current contract, Hurley is making $5.1 million. Meanwhile, Kansas’ Bill Self is due to make a little over $8.6 million for 2024-25.

UConn and what Hurley has built there proved to strong of a pull to leave for the NBA now. Following UConn’s second consecutive championship in April, USA TODAY ranked it No. 5 in its way-too-early 2024-25 rankings. “Given the past two seasons, trusting Dan Hurley to sort this out is a wise prediction,” USA TODAY wrote.

The Lakers’ coaching search now returns to JJ Redick and James Borrego, who have interviewed with the Lakers. The Lakers’ front office and decision-makers are impressed with Redick who has no coaching experience but clearly has a vision of how he wants a team to play, especially offensively.

The Lakers fired Darvin Ham after a 47-35 season and a first-round loss to top-seeded Denver in five games.

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