Insight into Lakers coaching candidate Monty Williams from someone who covered him

Joshua Dahl-USA TODAY Sports

Joshua Dahl-USA TODAY Sports

At this critical point of the recruitment process, only Monty Williams stands in the way of Lue rejoining the franchise he played for the franchise in the early 2000s, during the fertile Kobe-Shaq era.

Of all the candidates the Lakers have interviewed thus far, including Monty Williams, Juwan Howard and Jason Kidd, Lue is the only candidate that has direct ties to Los Angeles.

The Suns will interview Williams in Toronto on Friday. Griffin was the general manager with the Cleveland Cavaliers when they won the NBA Championship in 2016.

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The Los Angeles Lakers haven't played a basketball game for weeks, but they appear to be now embroiled in a serious competition of their own.

By all accounts, Monty Williams is a leading candidate. The comparison computes like this: Monty Williams may have a greater coaching pedigree in the National Basketball Association, but Lue's intangibles more than make up for the gap in relative skill/experience.

I would think L.A. eventually goes with Lue, though, because of his prior history with James.

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Jason Kidd was higher on the list during the National Basketball Association season. He is from the DMV-area, as is Durant and he used to coach Anthony Davis when he was the head coach of the New Orleans Pelicans. Magic Johnson was also calling the shots back then, as well. However, the Lakers made a decision to trade Nance to the Cleveland Cavaliers (along with fellow former Laker Jordan Clarkson) in the middle of the 2017-18 season in exchange for Channing Frye, Isaiah Thomas, and a first-round pick.

Durant signed a two-year, $61.5 million contract with the Warriors and has the option to opt out ahead of the 2019-20 season, per Spotrac.

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