Skip to main content
Publish date:

Report: LeBron James interested in Tom Thibodeau joining Lakers' coaching staff

The former Wolves coach is still collecting checks from Minnesota.
Author:

Minnesota basketball fans grew increasingly frustrated with Tom Thiboeau when he was head coach and president of basketball operations for the Timberwolves. 

Thibodeau was eventually fired after trading Jimmy Butler to the 76ers, and now he's a coaching free agent with the laser-focused eyes of LeBron James following him, according to a report. 

Frank Isola of The Athletic writes (paywall) that James and expected Lakers head coach Tyronn Lue want Thibodeau to join them in Los Angeles as an assistant coach. 

"The reports of Lue wanting to add his former colleague in Boston, Tom Thibodeau, to his coaching staff are also true. LeBron, through intermediaries, has let it be known that Thibodeau would be a huge asset to have on the bench. LeBron’s close associates were gauging Thibodeau’s interest in becoming a top assistant two weeks ago. It would be similar to the role Mike Brown and Ron Adams serve under Steve Kerr in Golden State.

"Thibodeau, however, is owed a lot of money from the Minnesota Timberwolves and the feeling is that he would prefer a head coaching job. Thibodeau has the resume and income to be patient. Plus, after dealing with an unstable management group in Minnesota, Thibodeau may be taking a wait-and-see approach with the “new-look” Lakers."

Thibodeau, despite his woes in Minnesota, is still a highly respected name in the NBA. And no one can deny that Thibodeau, by bringing in Butler via a trade with the Bulls, did lead the Wolves to the playoffs last season, snapping a streak of 13 straight years of missing the postseason. 

Of course, fans still wonder if one year in the playoffs – getting rocked in five games by the Rockets – was worth giving up rising star Zach LaVine and losing potential future star Lauri Markannen, whom the Bulls drafted with Minnesota's No. 7 pick in the 2017 draft. 

Hindsight is 20:20, but Thibodeau wanted to win rather than develop a young team, and if he joins LeBron in L.A. he probably won't have to wait long to win. 

Next Up

hospital, emergency room

Driver killed after other motorist crosses into opposite lane

The head-on crash occurred early Thursday, just north of the Twin Cities.

shot clock

MSHSL approves shot clock for Minnesota varsity basketball

Shot clocks will be required at all varsity games beginning in 2023-24.

Redmons Popcorn Colbert screengrab

Popcorn shop featured on 'The Late Show' has to close 2 days later

A county inspection after the national TV appearance found code violations.

covid, vaccine

Minnesotan infected with omicron was vaccinated, had booster shot

The Hennepin County man received his booster shot in early November.

Timothy William Tuit

2 people plead guilty in fatal Dakota County home invasion

Two others charged in the incident will go to trial next year.

south lake minnetonka police department

25-year-old arrested after multi-city police chase in western suburbs

Police were called for a welfare check but learned it was a domestic violence incident.

Screen Shot 2021-12-02 at 8.34.54 AM

After getting COVID, Harrison Smith still not considering vaccine

The Vikings safety says he doesn't plan on getting vaccinated.

covid

First omicron variant COVID case detected in MN

The individual is an adult male who lives in Hennepin County and had recently traveled.

wright county Sheriff Sean Deringer

Minnesota sheriff bashes MPD, 'disgusted' by officers' actions

The sheriff said he will no longer defend the Minneapolis Police Department.

Screen Shot 2021-12-02 at 7.59.52 AM

More than 2 years after announcing, Duck Donuts finally opens at MOA

The grand opening of the new location took place Wednesday.

Related

Tom Thibodeau laughs off reports of strife within Wolves

Thibs says he'll address any problems privately.

LeBron signs with Lakers, and that's bad news for the Wolves

LeBron moving to the West virtually guarantees the Lakers a trip to the playoffs.

Wolves by the numbers: Thibodeau vs. Saunders

Ryan Saunders has made good impressions early in his coaching career.

Wolves owner questions some of Thibodeau's coaching

Glen Taylor isn't happy with 3-point shooting and defense.

Report: Butler not opposed to joining LeBron in LA

We repeat: nobody thinks Butler is staying in Minnesota.

Reports: Butler's meeting with Wolves to have big impact on KAT

Butler is reportedly seriously contemplating his future in Minnesota.

Wolves fire head coach Tom Thibodeau

Ryan Saunders will take over as the interim head coach.