The writing has been on the wall all season that the Los Angeles Lakers and head coach Frank Vogel aren’t on the same page. With any head coach of the franchise in the midst of his team falling extremely short of expectations, their seat is going to get hot as rumors swirl. Vogel has been no exception, as a wave of reports came out a few months ago that illustrated him being on the brink of being fired. Eventually the rumors died down, however, his firing this offseason still seems likely. We now have our first report of who Vogel’s successor could be, as Marc Stein reported the following about Jazz head coach Quin Snyder in his latest substack ($$$).
As covered in my previous This Week In Basketball column, Snyder has been increasingly mentioned as a potential target for San Antonio to succeed Gregg Popovich. I’ve likewise heard Snyder’s name posed as a probable Los Angeles Lakers candidate should the Lakers and Frank Vogel part ways after what has been a nightmare season in Hollywood.
Snyder has ties to both teams after a three-season stint as San Antonio’s G League coach in Austin and one season as a Lakers assistant under Mike Brown.
That last part is crucial, as it’s almost impossible to believe at this point that the Lakers would go with anyone (whether its a player or a coach) that doesn’t have former ties with the Lakers.
However, this next part from Stein is crucial as there’s not even any guarantee that Snyder will be a coaching free agent this summer. In fact, it’s probably unlikely.
It’s crucial to note, of course, that Snyder is not currently projected to be a coaching free agent at season’s end. The 55-year-old’s precise contract situation is not publicly known, but he signed an extension with the Jazz before the 2019-20 season that, according to an ESPN report at the time, added “multiple years” to a deal that had two seasons remaining.
Snyder has been one of the better coaches in the NBA in the past few seasons, and although Vogel does have more championship experience than him, Snyder would almost certainly unlock the Lakers’ offense far more than Vogel could. The Jazz have also not been slouches on the defensive end, although Rudy Gobert may be a big reason for that. But what can be better than Gobert than none other than Anthony Davis.
We’ll have to see if this rumor gains any more traction once the season ends, and if Snyder would even be interested in the Lakers given the turmoil that Vogel has had to go through this year.