The Los Angeles Clippers got one up on city rivals Los Angeles Lakers when they won the race to sign Kawhi Leonard, who had also had multiple meetings and was reportedly close to joining the Lakers. They have now doubled their tally after agreeing a deal with Tyronn Lue to join the Clippers coaching staff alongside head coach Doc Rivers.

ESPN’s Dave McMenamin reports that the former Cleveland Cavaliers coach has agreed a deal to join the 2020 NBA championship favorites. The deal will see him become Rivers’ top assistant for the upcoming season, adding another arrow to their already packed with talent quiver.

Lue was the Lakers’ main target this summer to take over the vacant head coaching job following the departure of Luke Walton. They had held multiple meetings with the 2016 NBA championship-winning coach but were unable to reach an agreement.

Doc Rivers Doc Rivers of the Los Angeles Clippers motions to officials during the first half of a game against the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center in Los Angeles, March 4, 2019. Photo: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

The 42-year-old was also said to be keen to join the Lakers as he was interested in coaching LeBron James, with whom he won the 2016 NBA title in Cleveland but his requirement in terms of length of contract and wages was not suitable for the Los Angeles franchise. They eventually went on to hire Frank Vogel as the head coach with Jason Kidd as his top assistant.

Lue was without a job since being fired as the Cavaliers head coach just six games into the 2018-19 season. It came as a surprise as he had led them to three consecutive NBA Finals while holding a 128-83 record in his three-plus seasons with the franchise.

This is not the first time Lue and Rivers will link up, with the former already having spent time as Rivers’ assistant. The first time was with the Boston Celtics during the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons and again with the Clippers during the 2013-14 campaign before he went on to establish himself as a head coach.