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Suns set to follow Lakers in Monty Williams arms race

Are Suns fans ready to come in second behind LA again, or are things different this time?

NBA: Playoffs-Brooklyn Nets at Philadelphia 76ers Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

As Monty Williams prepares for coaching the 76ers through their second-round series against Toronto, he will have a lot going on during the day interviewing with both the Suns and Lakers between now and Game 1 on Saturday night.

Two reports today detail the level to which both franchises seem desperate to hire Williams to fill their head-coaching vacancies.

First it was Bill Oram from The Athletic reporting that anyone who’s ever worked for the Lakers is on their way to Philadelphia on Thursday to try to seal the deal on Williams. That includes general manager Rob Pelinka and owner Jeanie Buss as well as Buss’ younger brothers Jesse and Joey, Kurt Rambis and his wife Linda, and team COO Tim Harris.

Many believed when the Lakers first fired Luke Walton that the franchise would move quickly to secure Ty Lue, a former Lakers guard and Cavs coach who checks boxes for his relationship with LeBron James as well as the franchise.

Now, Williams appears to be the top target in Los Angeles as well as Phoenix.

We don’t yet know who will be involved in the Suns’ meeting with Williams in Toronto, but we can assume it will include SVP of Basketball Operations Jeff Bower, GM James Jones and managing partner Robert Sarver. There’s also a chance we get another Larry Fitzgerald sighting, right?

Suddenly, Willams is first in line at the coaching carousel and rival organizations are fighting to hire him first. It may seem at first site as if the Lakers meeting with him first is a bad sign for the Suns, but Williams agreeing to the interview Friday with Phoenix must mean he will not make his mind up until he speaks with both groups.

That means things should be wrapping up shortly as they pertain to Williams. We will know soon whether the Suns’ move away from Igor Kokoskov will become a more obvious upgrade to Williams or the team’s search will continue into the summer.

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