League sources said Saturday night that Kirilenko — if he and his $3.3 million contract clear waivers as expected — is eyeing a potential return to European basketball as opposed to resuming his NBA career. There are a handful of teams stateside still interested in pursuing him, sources say, but Kirilenko has not yet made it clear whether he’s prepared to consider fresh NBA offers.
September 29, 2016 | 6:27 pm EDT Update
“I talked to him about it,” Lue said Thursday, following practice. “I know his wife is pushing for it a lot. Brandi is pushing for it, trying to get him to come and coach. He says he’s not ready yet. He goes back, ‘I might do it,’ but he’s back and forth. We’ll see. But I’d definitely make a spot for him if he wanted to come back and coach.” Lue said Garnett would be in Cleveland for the Cavs’ opening night ceremonies Oct. 25, which will include the raising of the franchise’s first championship banner and presentation of rings.
And after that? “He says he’ll be around a lot. We’ll see.” Garnett, 40, is a year older than Lue, 39. Lue was an assistant coach on Doc Rivers’ bench during Garnett’s last four years with the Boston Celtics. Garnett won a championship with the Cs in 2008 and is a former NBA MVP. He is also among the pioneers of the high school-to-NBA movement, which includes LeBron James.
“He was just like LeBron,” Lue said. “One of the easiest guys to coach as far as being a superstar, as far as telling him what to do, they would do it. If they didn’t like what you were doing, they’d call you out to the side and tell you. They’d never call you out in front of everybody. Just having respect for everybody from the janitor to the owner. That’s our motto.”