The Los Angeles Lakers are trying to quickly rebound in their head coaching search after failing to land Tyronn Lue.
A person familiar with the search said former Indiana and Orlando coach Frank Vogel will be interviewed for the opening. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Thursday because the person wasn’t at liberty to publicly discuss negotiations. Vogel flew to Los Angeles on Thursday.
The 45-year old Vogel has 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 Pacers, including two trips to the Eastern Conference finals in 2013 and ’14. The Pacers lost both years to LeBron James and the Miami Heat.
Vogel is the fifth candidate known to have interviewed for the opening since the Lakers dismissed Luke Walton on April 12. Los Angeles was thought to be on the verge of hiring Lue this week before talks broke down. They have also considered Monty Williams, who was hired by the Phoenix Suns, Juwan Howard and Jason Kidd.
Besides interviewing with owner Jeanie Buss and general manager Rob Pelinka, Vogel is expected to meet with co-owners Jesse Buss (director of scouting) and Joey Buss (president of the Lakers’ G-League team) as well as senior adviser Kurt Rambis, chief operating officer Tim Harris and director of special projects Linda Rambis.
The Lakers have missed the playoffs six straight seasons. The playoff drought was expected to end this season but injuries to James, Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram, as well as internal discord, resulted in a 37-45 record. Magic Johnson resigned as president of basketball operations prior to the final regular-season game on April 9.
The Los Angeles Times was the first to report the Lakers’ plans to interview Vogel.