Report: Michigan basketball coach Juwan Howard turns down 'overture' from Lakers
Juwan Howard once again reportedly has turned down interest from the NBA.
ESPN NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Sunday that Howard, the Michigan men's basketball head coach, “recently declined a Los Angeles Lakers overture on the franchise’s head coaching job.”
Not long after the Lakers fired Frank Vogel in April following a three-season run that included an NBA championship in 2020, Howard’s name emerged as a potential candidate for the gig.
Howard, of course, has several connections with the Lakers. General manager Rob Pelinka and Howard were teammates together at Michigan. Howard also has a good relationship with Lakers star LeBron James, whom he won back-to-back NBA titles with on the Miami Heat in 2012 and 2013.
None of that, though, was enough to pull away Howard, who interviewed for the Lakers job that eventually went to Vogel before he took over at his alma mater three years ago. Ever since then, Howard has been linked to NBA openings each offseason.
Following his first season with the Wolverines, Howard’s name popped up as a potential coaching candidate for several NBA opportunities. He wasted little time releasing a statement that he was not “exploring, seeking or listening” to any offers.
The next summer, he was mentioned as a possible candidate for more coaching jobs, this time with the Boston Celtics and Portland Trail Blazers.
Howard appeared to confirm Sunday's news and reaffirmed his commitment to the Wolverines — a stance that hasn't changed despite his numerous trips through the NBA rumor mill — by tweeting a photo of him coaching the team during an NCAA Tournament practice this past season.
Given Howard’s deep ties to the NBA — 19 years as a player and six years as an assistant coach with the Heat — and the job he’s done as head coach at Michigan, this will likely continue to be a common offseason theme.
Howard, 49, has guided the Wolverines to a 61-32 record, a Big Ten regular-season title, and trips to the Elite Eight and Sweet 16 in three seasons. He signed an extension in November that runs through the 2025-26 season and is set to coach his sons Jace, a junior-to-be, and Jett, an incoming freshman, this upcoming season.