Controversy surrounds Duke basketball legend JJ Redick as Lakers search heats up

The podcast of the former Blue Devil is at the center of much scrutiny as the Lakers get closer to a decision
2024 NBA Finals - Game Two; Former Duke basketball standout JJ Redick
2024 NBA Finals - Game Two; Former Duke basketball standout JJ Redick / Maddie Meyer/GettyImages

An NBA Champion might be crowned on Monday night but much of the basketball world is still captivated by the conversations surrounding Duke basketball legend JJ Redick.

Redick had a formal interview with the Los Angeles Lakers for its coaching vacancy on Saturday, one day after broadcasting Game 4 of the NBA Finals on ABC.

There has been a lot linked between Redick and the Lakers but those talks significantly cooled after ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Los Angeles was making a strong run at UConn head coach Dan Hurley.

Hurley eventually declined the Lakers offer, seemingly giving Redick the opportunity to become the historic franchise's head coach after the NBA season, and his broadcasting responsibilities for ESPN, concluded.

It would be the first ever coaching job for Redick at any level.

Now, as that date appears to be getting close, others in the media have been calling out Redick and his podcast, Mind the Game, with LeBron James.

Stephen A. Smith said on Thursday during an episode of ESPN's First Take that it was "one of the most egregious things that we've seen a basketball player to do a coach" for Redick and James to start their podcast breaking down the details of NBA games during the middle of the season while Lakers head coach Darvin Ham was on the hot seat.

Brian Windhorst agreed with Smith's sentiments regarding the podcast and the timing in which it started.

Smith said on Monday's episode that other coaches in the NBA also took exception with the podcast as it was an early way for the Lakers to get an idea on Redick's coaching style as Ham's days with the organization were likely numbered.

"We are certainly not blaming JJ Redick," he said. "Any of us would do a podcast with LeBron James. Anyone who says otherwise, that they wouldn't do a podcast with LeBron James, is lying through their damn teeth."

It is assumed that James will have a major say in the coaching decision for the Lakers and the relationship he and Redick have formed through the podcast is expected to give the former Blue Devil the advantage in the coaching search.

More details on the potential hiring of JJ Redick by the Los Angeles Lakers would be reported following the NBA Finals between the Dallas Mavericks and the Boston Celtics, which could end as early as Monday evening.