Dan Hurley declines Lakers head-coaching job, will return to UConn: Source

Dan Hurley will not go to the NBA after all. The UConn coach declined a massive contract offer from the Los Angeles Lakers to become the team’s next head coach, a source close to the program confirmed Monday.

Los Angeles would have made Hurley one of the NBA’s six highest-paid coaches, per ESPN.

The 51-year-old Hurley emerged as a leading candidate last week, when news broke he and the Lakers were in contact about Los Angeles’ head-coaching vacancy. Lakers leadership met Friday with Hurley, who cemented his status as the top active coach in college basketball after guiding UConn to back-to-back national championships in 2023 and 2024.

The Lakers — coming off a first-round playoff exit — have been in search of their coach since the team fired Darvin Ham on May 3 after two seasons. Where L.A. goes next is unclear. JJ Redick, the ESPN analyst and former player, was previously seen as the front-runner by many in the NBA and Lakers organization, and James Borrego, the New Orleans Pelicans’ associate coach who has maintained a strong relationship with All-NBA big man Anthony Davis, has also been under consideration.

The hire is pivotal as Los Angeles hopes to retain star LeBron James, who must decide whether to exercise his $51.4 million player option for the 2024-25 season by June 29.


With Hurley in talks with Lakers, how have college coaches fared in the NBA?

Hurley’s decision is a triumph for UConn, which is poised to be a preseason top-10 team and a contender to win its third consecutive national championship. Hurley, who signed a six-year, $32.1 million contract with UConn in 2023, had a heavily reduced buyout for if he left for an NBA head-coaching job — $1.875 million, versus a $7.5 million buyout if he left for a college head-coaching job.

This story will be updated.

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(Photo: Chris Coduto / Getty Images)

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