17 People who turned their backs on the Los Angeles Lakers

These former Lakers did not leave on the best terms.

Los Angeles Lakers, Dwight Howard
Los Angeles Lakers, Dwight Howard / Harry How/GettyImages
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
2 of 17
Next

16. Tyronn Lue

Lue joined the Lakers in a 1998 draft night trade with the Denver Nuggets. He spent his first three NBA seasons in Los Angeles as a reserve guard and helped them win two championships. Lue left to join the Wizards in free agency in 2001 and played for seven different teams during his 11-year NBA career.

Lue did not turn his back on the Lakers until his coaching days. After retiring in 2009, he jumped into a career on the bench. He was an assistant with the Celtics, Clippers, and Cavaliers before getting his first head coaching shot in 2016. Lue led the Cavs to a championship and that run made him the favorite to land the Lakers opening in 2019.

LeBron James wanted Lue and was pushing hard for him. The Lakers offered him a three-year deal, but the three-time NBA champion turned it down. He was making money from his buyout with the Cavaliers and wanted Los Angeles to give him a five-year deal. Ultimately, talks broke off and the Lakers went in another direction.

Tyronn Lue joined the Clippers as an assistant instead, and he took less than the $6 million per season the Lakers were offering. Lue ended up being their head coach after one season, and the Lakers won a championship with Frank Vogel. It all worked out, but the former Lakers guard certainly turned his back on the franchise.