LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Reaction has been mixed to reports Frank Vogel, formerly with the Orlando Magic and Indiana Pacers, will sign a three-year contract to be the next head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers, with basketball veteran Jason Kidd as his assistant.
As the news was reported by multiple sources Saturday, fans and others flooded social media and other outlets to share comments, memes and gifs expressing both delight and disdain.
Most pointedly Los Angeles Times sportswriter Bill Plaschke shared his thoughts on the paper's website under a headline including the question “Are they kidding.”
“In its latest bewildering move, a franchise that once enjoyed a Who's Who of coaching talent has hired a Who's That?,” Plaschke wrote. “This is really going to be, um, interesting.”
Others focused on what the April 12 departure by mutual agreement of former head coach Luke Walton and the Vogel-Kidd hiring will mean for superstar Lebron James, who joined the Lakers in July 2018.
“It's so ugly fam ... so ugly,” “Bachelor in Paradise” star Jackson DeMario said on Twitter. “My king deserves better.”
But Brendan Tobin, host of The Ticket sports show in Miami called the change a “beautiful marriage in the making” while others used “McLovin it” gifs to describe their feelings.
In six successful seasons with the Pacers, Vogel, 45, had a record of 250 wins and 181 losses, with five NBA playoff appearances.
In two seasons with the Magic, however, Vogel went just 54-110 and was dismissed last year.
Kidd as a player was one of the most celebrated point guards in NBA history and had moderate success as head coach of the Brooklyn Nets and Milwaukee Bucks, going 183-190 in 20-13 through 20-18.
According to the Times, the Lakers interviewed Kidd in April in what some at first considered a courtesy move.
But upon meeting with Lakers' front office personnel, Kidd made such an impression they wanted him on the coaching staff of whichever head coach they hired, the Times reported.
The Lakers are hoping Kidd can be a positive influence on talented-yet- inconsistent point guard Lonzo Ball, a UCLA product whose potential skill set is compared with Kidd's, the Times said.
Prior to settling on Vogel, the Lakers apparently offered a similar three-year head coach deal to Tyronn Lue -- who in recent years led James and the Cleveland Cavaliers to an NBA title and three consecutive NBA finals appearances.
Lue turned the offer down -- some say because he objected to including Kidd on his staff -- but anticipated the Lakers would make a better offer that didn't come, the Times reported.
The Lakers finished with a 37-45 record this season, missing the playoffs for the sixth consecutive year. The team's last NBA championship came in 2010.
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