It's official: Lakers introduce JJ Redick as their new coach

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The Lakers formally announced former NBA player and broadcaster JJ Redick as their next head coach, a decision that’s been met with a mixture of curiosity and skepticism.

Redick, who has no formal head coaching experience, agreed to the job last Thursday.

Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka and Redick met with the media Monday at the team’s facility with major decisions looming.

“We are thrilled to introduce JJ Redick as the next head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers,” said Pelinka, who is also the Lakers’ vice president of basketball operations. “After a thoughtful and thorough search process, I couldn’t be more proud to welcome JJ, his wife Chelsea, and their two sons to the Lakers family. JJ is a fierce competitor and has an extraordinary basketball IQ and understanding of the modern game that will energize players and excite fans. His rigorous analysis will immediately unlock new opportunities for our roster while setting a foundation for player development over the long term. He brings an intense dedication to innovation, advancing the game and staying at the forefront of an ever-evolving league.

“Beyond his basketball acumen, JJ has a care for people and genuine empathy that are critical for connecting with players today. This is an exciting time for Lakers basketball.”

The team owns the No. 17 pick Wednesday in the first round of the NBA draft and can use it, their 2029 and 2031 first-round picks in trades this summer.

LeBron James and D’Angelo Russell have player options for the upcoming season and the team is expected to be minor players in free agency as currently constructed.

It’s why, in part, the Lakers have looked to Redick to issue in a new era of the franchise, with the Lakers shifting more to analytical and developmental approaches while still trying to contend in the final years of James’ career, should he re-sign with the Lakers this summer if he becomes a free agent.

Redick, who turned 40 on Monday, will attempt to lead the Lakers despite no time spent coaching in the NBA. He played for 15 years in the league before moving behind the microphone. He just finished calling the NBA Finals on ESPN. He also hosts a number of basketball podcasts, including “Mind the Game,” a basketball strategy-based podcast he co-hosted with James.

“I am incredibly humbled to join the Los Angeles Lakers, one of the most iconic and successful sports franchises in the world,” Redick said. “This opportunity for me is all about service to the players, team and organization. I want to express my utmost appreciation to Jeanie Buss, Rob Pelinka and the entire Lakers front office. My goal will focus on delivering championship-caliber basketball for Lakers fans everywhere, building on the tremendous history and legacy of the Lakers.

“I am excited to surround myself with a veteran, innovative staff as we work relentlessly to develop individual players and maximize the team’s potential. My family and I couldn’t be more ecstatic for this new chapter in our lives and look forward to immersing ourselves in the vibrant Los Angeles community.”

In Pelinka’s opening statements at the introductory news conference Monday, he said during the coaching search that the team wanted to see if it “could do something a little different.”

Pelinka also said the Lakers have to “modernize” and lean into “player development.” He said James was supportive of the team during its coaching search but chose not to be involved in the process. Pelinka added that Anthony Davis was involved.

When Redick addressed the media, he said that he first spoke to James on Thursday about half an hour after he got the offer to coach the Lakers. He said they talked for about 15-20 minutes.

“I don’t look at the current roster as that far off from being a championship-caliber team,” Redick said.

“If you look at the NBA right now, the group matters more than ever,” Redick said, adding stars matter but it’s really “about the group.”

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