Coach K turns down Lakers, remains at Duke
Durham, NC (Sports Network) - Mike Krzyzewski has turned down a lucrative contract offer to coach the Los Angeles Lakers, choosing instead to remain at Duke where he has coached the men's basketball team for 24 years.
He rebuffed the offer Monday after spending the weekend thinking about it, the university said.
Krzyzewski has compiled a 621-179 mark at Duke and a 694-240 record overall in 29 years of college coaching. University president Richard Brodhead and athletic director Joe Alleva have expressed their interest in having the coach end his career with the Blue Devils program.
"We want Coach K to stay in the worst way," Alleva said at a press conference last week.
Their wish has been granted.
The Lakers have been in search of a head coach since Phil Jackson agreed to leave the team after this past season. They advanced to the NBA Finals for the fourth time under Jackson this year, but lost to the Detroit Pistons in five games. It was the first time in 10 NBA Finals that a Jackson-coached team failed to win a title.
A leading candidate for the job is believed to be former Houston Rockets head coach Rudy Tomjanovich, who has already met with Lakers owner Jerry Buss and general manager Mitch Kupchak.
Miami Heat president and former Lakers coach Pat Riley also met the Lakers brass. However, he was not offered a deal and was ruled out as a candidate.LAL