Add another layer to the bizarre coaching hires of the Lakers.
While insisting that Jason Kidd would be on the staff with whichever head coach was brought on was weird in and of itself, this new rumor may be even more unusual.
According to a report from Newsday, which cites a person familiar with the Lakers’ process, Los Angeles hired Kidd with the hopes of attracting Giannis Antetokounmpo when he hits free agency in 2021.
“It is just speculation right now, but one person asked me if I knew why Kidd was there and as I guessed at his relationship with LeBron James or his ability to tutor Lonzo Ball, the person familiar with the Lakers process said something else: that Kidd was brought to Los Angeles to attract Giannis Antetokounmpo to the Lakers when he becomes a free agent in two years when the Bucks star could become an unrestricted free agent.
“Antetokounmpo played for Kidd in Milwaukee for three and a half seasons beginning in his second season in the league. The notion of him leaving remains far off — and maybe less likely as he has the Bucks two wins away from the NBA Finals. The team had the best record in the NBA this season while playing in a brand new arena.”
This report has a lot of intrigue to it, including the fact that LeBron James could leave the Lakers after the 2021 season as well, but as it says, it really is just speculation at this point and something for two years down the road anyway.
A lot can change in that time.
However, Giannis has already said he has no desire to play with the Lakers.
“To be honest with you, no, no way,” Antetokounmpo said in 2018 when asked whether he would leave for the Lakers, via The Herd. “I like finishing the stuff that I have with Milwaukee. My goal is to win in Milwaukee, bring a championship to the city. … I would never leave for L.A.”
— Herd w/Colin Cowherd (@TheHerd) July 2, 2018
So it doesn’t look like, at the moment, Giannis is in any way bound for Los Angeles, but that apparently isn’t keeping the Lakers from trying to position themselves to get him.