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What's next for the Lakers? Judging by recent reports, not a lot will change

Most people expect a major organizational overhaul following one of the worst seasons in the Lakers' history. But it doesn't seem that will be the case.
What's next for LeBron James and the LA Lakers

LeBron James 

Tuesday's loss to the Phoenix Suns was the final nail in the Lakers' playoffs coffin. With three games left in the regular season, they are now officially eliminated from play-in contention.

What's next for the Purple and Gold? Most people expect a major organizational overhaul. But it doesn't seem that will be the case.

No changes at the top

According to Bleacher Report's Eric Pincus, Jeanie Buss, who, alongside her siblings, owns two-thirds of the franchise, isn't looking to sell the Lakers.

Buss, who took control of the team in 2017, will continue to rely heavily on Linda and Kurt Rambis as the Lakers' advisors -- the former is viewed by many as 'LA's Shadow Owner.' Barring the unexpected, changes at the top seem unlikely. The same goes for the rest of LA's front office, most notably the GM role.

"The buzz around the league suggests general manager Rob Pelinka has another year to get the Lakers back on track," Pincus writes. "The blame internally appears to be focused on injuries, Russell Westbrook and LeBron James for pressuring the team to trade for Westbrook."

Frank Vogel is out

No mention of Frank Vogel, and yet, he'll be the first domino to fall in what seems to be an unmapped path forward for one of the NBA's two winningest organizations. 

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BR's Jake Fischer already listed a few potential candidates to replace Vogel once the inevitable breakup happens. Quin Snyder and Doc Rivers are two names most mentioned by league personnel to take over the Lakers' head coaching role next season. 

The likes of Mike Brown and Steve Clifford have also emerged as potential candidates, and there are even reports about Kurt Rambis returning to the sidelines. However, that scenario seems unlikely, given his integral role with the team's front office.

Whoever the Lakers pick, it for sure won't be done without LeBron James' blessing. And while the Doc Rivers/Quin Snyder scenarios seem far-fetched -- both of their teams are going into this year's playoffs with a chance to come out of their respective conferences -- the LeBron-Brown reunion looks like a real possibility and something the 37-year-old superstar would be happy with going into his 20th NBA season.

Run it back?

Barring any initiative from his side, James is here to stay. He has one year left on his deal and is eligible for an extension as early as August 4. 

Despite being a huge disappointment this year, it doesn't seem the Lakers will move on from Anthony Davis either. But the injury concerns are as real as ever, and the 29-year-old will have to address them during the summer.

Then there's Russell Westbrook, assuming he opts into the final year of his contract at $47.1 million. The more likely scenario for the organization is to allow a new coach, whoever that is, to run the Westbrook experiment back with some tweaks to the roster. 

The alternative is to get rid of him in a market that is set to be very limited. The Lakers also don't have short-term deal sweeteners that would persuade another team to take Westbrook's salary -- even their 2027 first-round pick was off the table at this year's trade deadline. 

Assuming they opt for the Westbrook trade route, the Lakers will hardly get an equal value in return. But any roster shakeup might be better than no shakeup at all.

At this point, with no financial flexibility, it's either that or hoping that Vogel's successor might find a way to unlock the Big Three's potential and get the Lakers back into title contention.

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