The New Orleans Pelicans have officially fired coach Alvin Gentry, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Andrew Lopez. Last week, there were reports that Lakers assistant manager Jason Kidd should have been a candidate for that job if he opened up.
Kidd is reportedly “eager” to be a head coach again after most of his first season with the Lakers, and his reps are certainly working overtime to make his name known, as he’s already been linked to the work for the Nets at least twice prior to this and was also flagged as “a frontrunner” for the New York Knicks head coach gig (and got an interview) before they eventually hired Tom Thibodeau.
In terms of this news, potentially relevant is that Kidd has ties to both the Nets and the Pelicans. Kyrie Irving – who grew up rooting for Kidd with the Nets – has talked about looking up to Kidd and has called him “an extraordinary leader” in the past.
In the case of New Orleans, Kidd – to whom Lonzo Ball, former Lakers and current Pelicans point guard, has been compared at times during the draft – already has a relationship with Ball, albeit not extensive. This was reportedly partly why the Lakers initially wanted Kidd on their staff, and it’s possible that too could be a strength for the Pelicans.
But regardless of where he goes, with Kidd now being linked to the Nets and Pelicans again, it’s really starting to seem like a question of when, not if, he’ll leave the Lakers. We’ll see where he goes eventually, but it seems increasingly likely that Frank Vogel will have at least one free bench seat to fill this summer.