Report: Lakers ask Bulls for permission to interview Tom Thibodeau
Well, the Lakers do have a first-round pick the upcoming NBA Draft. In fact, it's the Lakers' first lottery pick since 2005 when they picked a high schooler whom you may have heard of named named Kobe Bryant.
ESPN LA's Dave McNamin broke the news that the Lakers have asked for permission to interview Tom Thibodeau. McNamin's reporting was seconded by Marc Stein and Ramona Shelburne in their ESPN rundown of Lakers coaching candidates that also includes John Calipari (Kentucky) and Kevin Ollie (UConn).
"The Lakers also plan to reach out to the Chicago Bulls for permission to interview coach Tom Thibodeau," write Stein and Shelburne. "The Lakers are closely monitoring the playoffs, believing that several viable candidates could become available should their respective teams be eliminated."
Thibs might have the inside track here. Kobe Bryant is rumored to prefer Thibodeau. What is unknown is whether Thibodeau is willing to leave Chicago.
Trades for NBA head coaches are rare, but they've happened. In addition to the Clippers trading for Rivers, a Big Lead analysis of NBA coach trades found six other trades for NBA head coaches since 1981. Hilariously, both Van Gundy brothers were coaches traded for picks.
Each trade was for draft picks, never for a player. But teams are theoretically allowed to trade players for a coach.
This is not the first time someone has threatened to trade for Tom Thibodeau. The Knicks were interested in trading for Thibodeau this past December, but they don't have a first-round pick because of the Carmelo Anthony deal.