HoopsHype Coaching rumors


March 3, 2015 Updates

Marc Stein: Coaching sources say Nuggets will take a long-term view on finding replacement for B-Shaw, but there are a couple key names to watch already. Former Nuggets coach Mike D'Antoni and former Nuggets guard Avery Johnson likely to be contenders for post. Alvin Gentry another strong name. Twitter @ESPNSteinLine

As for Shaw's eventual replacement, a person with knowledge of Mike D'Antoni's thinking told USA TODAY Sports that he would have a strong interest in returning to the place where he started his NBA coaching career. Before rising to relevance with the Phoenix Suns during their "Seven Seconds or Less" era and later coaching the New York Knicks and Los Angeles Lakers, D'Antoni's Nuggets went 14-36 when he took over midway through the 1998-99 season. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the private nature of the process. Former Golden State Warriors coach Mark Jackson is believed to be among the likely candidates, along with Warriors associate head coach Alvin Gentry and Chicago Bulls assistant coach Adrian Griffin. USA Today Sports

The Denver Nuggets have relieved Brian Shaw of his head coaching duties, General Manager and Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly announced today. Additionally, Melvin Hunt has been named interim head coach for the remainder of the season. NBA.com

March 2, 2015 Updates

But in classic Bulls fashion, an injury, this time Jimmy Butler's hyperextending his left elbow while on defense on a DeAndre Jordan screen, delayed things for a few minutes. After a commercial break, Breen asked Van Gundy if he could discuss his previous comments, which occurred on-air in a January game between the Bulls and Dallas Mavericks and then this past week, to a Chicago media writer. Van Gundy told Ed Sherman, writing for the Chicago Tribune, that he was asked by Thibodeau's agent to "tone it down" after the Mavericks game, while noting Forman yelled at him at the Dallas game. “Can you speak about it without sleeping with the fishes?” Breen said. ESPN.com

Van Gundy was happy to, and during his conversation with Breen, the ESPN cameras cut to Forman and Paxson, with the latter staring intently at his phone. “What I said previously, I stand by,” Van Gundy said. “I think, over the course of time, they’ve been unfriendly and they haven’t been pro-coach. “I think you go all the way back to Doug Collins’ time here, then Phil Jackson, and go on and on and on. So I don’t really feel the need to reiterate too much. That’s what I said. That’s what I believe.” ESPN.com

March 1, 2015 Updates

You said on Twitter that you don't anticipate getting into coaching after all this. Why not? Stephen Curry: I hope to play until I'm like 38 or something, and that's a lot of years in the game and a lot of travel and a lot of sacrifice on my family's part. That's more what I was thinking about long-term — being able to spend time with my kids that'll be somewhat grown by then, and enjoying life outside of basketball. I want to be involved in the game somehow, but I think just the time commitment of coaching is not very attractive to me if I play as long as I plan to play. CBSSports.com

“This is what he loves to do,” said Kim Van Deraa, Karl’s longtime companion and mother of the couple’s 10-year-old daughter, Kaci. “And we understand that. I’ll never forget sitting in our living room in Denver that night, and George says, ‘Kaci, I might have this opportunity to coach the Sacramento Kings. What do you think?’ Her response was, ‘Daddy, you need to coach. You love to coach.’ We both understood how important it was for him to get back on the sidelines. When you’re a coach, it becomes who you are.” But George Karl isn’t just any coach. His journey isn’t just any journey. He knows all about sleepless nights and tortured dreams. Success, failure, second chances, doors opening, doors slamming; there isn’t much he hasn’t experienced. Sacramento Bee

During his first head-coaching job, when he was 33, Karl guided the modestly talented Cavaliers into the playoffs (1984-85), but he was fired a year later when the team slumped. He was hired the following offseason by former Golden State owner Jim Fitzgerald after being recommended by general manager Don Nelson, and he led the Warriors into the playoffs for the first time in nine seasons. But he lost the job during a tumultuous second season that included Chris Mullin’s absence for alcohol rehabilitation, the trades of aging, veteran players, and Karl’s erratic behavior that included thrashing Joe Barry Carroll’s locker. “George was young and kind of crazy,” Papa said, “but there was more to it than that. Fitz wanted Nellie to coach. The team wasn’t very good. George wound up with a reputation and was banished to the CBA, then to Spain. But I always tell him, ‘You should be the winningest coach in the NBA.’ Just do the math over those four years when he was unfairly ostracized. I think he is every bit the coach Don Nelson is, and I think very highly of Don Nelson. Two of the greatest coaches I’ve ever seen. George is that caliber.” Sacramento Bee

But along the way, the man once nicknamed “Furious George” learned a few lessons, too. He could charm with his charisma, his accessibility became an ally, and his increasingly tempered demeanor allowed him to become a better communicator. “I never really knew why Whitsitt brought me back,” Karl said. “I was known as a volatile guy, which early in my career I probably was. Bob helped me control my ego, and he would mentor me, direct me, instead of yelling at me. He told me, ‘You coach the team. I’ll take care of your image.’ “But it always bothers me when people say, ‘Well, he didn’t get along with’ this person or, ‘He’s volatile.’ They should also have to say, ‘That was 25 years ago.’ How many coaches have stayed seven years (Seattle), six years (Milwaukee) and eight years (Denver)? You can’t last that long if you’re volatile.” Sacramento Bee

Cancer, he said, changes everything. Karl is approaching his five-year anniversary from bouts with prostate and throat cancers. His son, Coby, recovered from thyroid cancer and plays professionally in Germany. Karl’s other daughter, Kelci, is the deputy chief financial officer in the Department of Social and Health Services in Washington state. “The cancer made George think about his mortality,” Van Deraa said. “You’re scared. He still thinks about it. When you feel normal aches and pains, your concerns are much deeper. But there is a reason he got this job. It was very difficult for him not to be on the sidelines. He wanted to do it one more time. So why not?” Sacramento Bee

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