Mike D’Antoni resigned as head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers on April 30, but the Lakers have yet to fill their vacant coaching position. The reason for the delay, an NBA source tells USA Today, is to time the hire with the upcoming free agency period. Specifically, the team is hoping to land Heat star LeBron James and Knicks star Carmelo Anthony, among other players at the top of the class.
James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh all have player options with the Heat next season worth around $20 million. Anthony has a $23.5 million player option with the Knicks. The story also mentions Anthony joining those three in Miami to form a Big Four, though all players involved would have to take significant pay cuts.
Whether or not this works for Los Angeles, it’s more evidence than ever that the NBA is a player-driven league. The Lakers likely won’t have a coach in place for the June 26 NBA Draft, but the league source tells USA Today that is “not a necessity”.