LOS ANGELES — Tyronn Lue, who coached Cleveland to the 2016 NBA championship, is engaged in talks with the Clippers about joining coach Doc Rivers’ staff as a top assistant.
The hiring is considered likely to happen, a person with knowledge of the discussions told the Los Angeles Times.
That would reunite the ex-Husker Lue with Rivers, a close friend who jump-started Lue’s coaching career.
One of Lue’s 11 NBA seasons as a guard was spent playing for Rivers in Orlando, and he broke into coaching in 2011 with Boston while Rivers was the Celtics’ head coach. Lue worked as a Clippers assistant during the 2013-14 season before joining Cleveland where, following a promotion, he coached the Cavaliers to three consecutive NBA finals appearances and the franchise’s first NBA title, in 2016.
Cleveland fired Lue last season after an 0-6 start, and Rivers defended Lue at the time, calling the decision “awful.” Lue has a 128-83 career record as a head coach. By December, the Clippers added Lue, 42, in an informal role that involved him spending time around the team and providing his thoughts to Rivers.
Lue has come close to coaching in Los Angeles before this season. He met with the Lakers in April about becoming the team’s head coach before undergoing a second interview. Talks broke down in early May, and the Lakers eventually hired Frank Vogel as head coach.
Lue also won two NBA championships as a player with the Lakers, sharing the court with Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant.
In three seasons at NU, Lue became the school’s ninth-leading scorer and was top 10 in 13 other statistical categories. He led the Huskers to the 1998 NCAA tournament and helped win the 1996 NIT before being a first-round NBA draft pick upon leaving a year early.