Los Angeles Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak has insisted that there is nothing to reports suggesting that they want to appoint Tom Thibodeau as their new coach.
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It is widely reported that Thibodeau will leave the Bulls this summer as he continues to have his issues with the front office and suffered a disappointing early exit from the playoffs this season.
While the New Orleans Pelicans and Orlando Magic are seemingly the front-runners to acquire him, the Lakers had been linked with a move earlier this week.
However, Kupchak has moved to dismiss the reports and insisted that they fully support current coach Byron Scott who still has a year remaining on his current deal.
“I saw something about that this morning, and my first thought was, ‘Let me call [Lakers coach] Byron [Scott] and let him know that the agents are doing their job, and pay no attention.’ Not that I think Byron reads any of that stuff, but someone may call him and say ‘Hey, guess what I just read?’ Nothing to it,” Kupchak told Fox Sports Radio.
“We’re incredibly happy with Byron. That’s what representatives and agents do. They try to create a marketplace for their guy, and I’m not saying that’s exactly what happened here, but we’re very, very happy with Byron, and after I hang up with you I’m going to call him or text him.”
It was always suggested that the rumour could have been a bid to either drum up interest in Thibodeau to increase his salary offers, while the Bulls would also benefit as it could potentially lead to a bidding war as they look to receive a strong compensation package before they let him go.
Thibodeau still has two years remaining on his Bulls deal, and it is understood that Chicago will not let him leave until they have received a commitment from their desired replacement that he is ready to join them.
Both Fred Hoiberg and Alvin Gentry have been linked with the post, although the latter has been interviewed by the Pelicans too.