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Saturday, June 22, 2024

Dan Hurley stays at UConn, turns down provide to teach Lakers for probability to pursue third straight NCAA title

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The Huskies have received but once more.

Dan Hurley has turned down a career-altering job provide from the Los Angeles Lakers and can stay in school basketball as UConn’s coach, a supply confirmed to CBS Sports activities. If ever there was an occasion to agency up Connecticut’s blue-blood standing, that is it. Regardless of being introduced with a mammoth contract that oversized UConn’s bidding worth, Hurley however spurned the NBA’s most glamorous franchise to remain in Storrs, Connecticut, and can proceed to supervise the very best program within the sport.

Hurley traveled to Los Angeles for an interview Friday to fulfill with Lakers president Jeannie Buss and normal supervisor Rob Pelinka. He was offered a imaginative and prescient of overseeing a professional franchise that would function in his picture and together with his affect on the forefront of the Lakers group within the years to come back. However what that job couldn’t present is the long-term stability and the comforts of Storrs and his beloved territory, the East Coast.

Hurley flew again East on Saturday, simply in time to attend a Billy Joel live performance at one other NBA facility he is all too conversant in: Madison Sq. Backyard, AKA “Storrs South.” Huskies assistant Luke Murray attended the live performance alongside Hurley and Hurley’s spouse, Andrea, posting a brief video clip of the three of them on Instagram (with Hurley in a New York, New York T-shirt, no much less). Looking back, the IG put up functioned as a harbinger of the excellent news that was to come back for UConn followers.

Hurley’s determination is a quake to professional and school hoops. On the school aspect, this retains UConn extremely ranked heading into the 2024-25 season, reigniting the Huskies’ hopes and desires of a three-peat — one thing final achieved in males’s school basketball within the early Seventies by UCLA. The NBA fallout: Hurley’s cross on the Lakers brings extra hypothesis and recalibration relating to the timeline and new main candidate for a legacy franchise seeking to capitalize within the winter years of LeBron James’ profession. Beforehand, within the days earlier than Hurley’s identify was hooked up to the emptiness, ESPN broadcaster/commentator JJ Redick had reportedly been the Lakers’ best choice.

In opting to remain within the school ranks, Hurley joins the likes of Mike Krzyzewski, Jay Wright, Tom Izzo, Jim Boeheim and Bob Knight as championship-winning school coaches who turned down NBA job gives. Hurley’s rebuff comes 20 years after Krzyzewski did the identical factor to the Lakers, solely as a substitute of getting LeBron James, it was Kobe Bryant who was the megawatt star in L.A. 20 years again. 

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A lifelong resident of the Northeast, Hurley finally selected to return to a spot the place he is beloved and, ought to the Huskies’ streak of dominance proceed within the years to come back, has an opportunity to go down as probably the greatest coaches within the historical past of males’s school basketball. 

It is an enormous day for faculty basketball, which retains one of many largest stars in its sport and, crucially, avoids a possible mass exodus of expertise out of Storrs. 

UConn is ranked No. 5 in Gary Parrish’s offseason rankings, due to the return of rising junior Alex Karaban, the important thing portal addition of Aiden Mahaney (Saint Mary’s) and incoming five-star freshman Liam McNeeley. Karaban just lately determined to return to Connecticut after closely flirting with going to the NBA. Amongst many causes Hurley determined to return, Karaban’s determination to return was additionally an element.

The NBA nonetheless stays a looming curiosity for Hurley, nevertheless it is likely to be years earlier than he flirts with the Affiliation once more. The job he covets way more than the Lakers is housed proper the place he watched Billy Joel on Saturday evening: The New York Knicks. If not there, then doubtlessly someplace else on the East Coast (the Celtics, Nets or 76ers), ought to any of them open and are available calling later this decade. 

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