HoopsHype Don Nelson rumors


April 2, 2012 Updates

Bucks assistant coach Sidney Moncrief not only played for Nelson in Milwaukee but was later an assistant coach for him, Monrief, one of the NBA’s greatest defensive guards ever and the recipient of the first two Defensive Player of the Years awards, said he wouldn’t have accomplished as much as he did without Nelson’s mentoring. “I would not have been a five-time NBA All-Star, a two-time NBA Defensive Player of the year, an all-pro without Don Nelson and playing in his system,’’ Moncrief said. “The way he coached us, the way he trained us was exceptional. “He had high expectations for us and expected us to play at a high level.’’ Racine Journal-Times

March 31, 2012 Updates
March 30, 2012 Updates

Bucks assistant coach Sidney Moncrief became a star player with the franchise in the 1980s. And he gives much of the credit to coach Don Nelson, who learned Wednesday he will be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame. Nelson won 540 games with the Bucks from 1976-'87 and went on to win 1,335 NBA games, the most of any coach in league history. "Nellie has had such a profound impact on the game of basketball, on the offensive and defensive end," Moncrief said Thursday. "A lot of people don't realize that Nellie was one of the first coaches in the NBA, that had the creative defenses that looked like a zone but was a man-to-man. "I think one thing you have to remember is his ability to adapt to his players and his players' style." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

Moncrief played for the Bucks from 1979-'89 and was part of Nelson's string of seven consecutive division titles. Moncrief was a five-time all-star and two-time NBA defensive player of the year. "I remember when I was a rookie I was trying to play defense a certain way, like I played in college (at Arkansas)," Moncrief said. "I was very passive. "He said, 'You can't play defense like that in the NBA. You've got to get up on the guy, body the guy, be physical. All the things that were very important to me later as a player, he was able to bring out. Also from an offensive standpoint, I don't know if I would have been a five- time NBA all-star and do the things I've done without Nellie being my coach." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

March 29, 2012 Updates

Former Bucks coach Don Nelson will be among this year's class inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame. Nelson told ESPN on Wednesday that he got the call earlier in the day. The official announcement of the 2012 class for the hall will be Monday at the NCAA Final Four in New Orleans. "It's a great honor to cap my career," Nelson said. "I've had a great time and a great life coaching basketball. I don't actually need to rewarded for anything, but I am very proud and my family is very proud of this award." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

March 28, 2012 Updates

Jerry Zgoda: Congratulations to Don Nelson for making the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame! Well, well deserved to NBA's all- time winning coach... Twitter

March 27, 2012 Updates

That Nelson never won an NBA title as a coach? Neither did Jerry Sloan -- 2009 inductee Jerry Sloan -- and Nellie's rosters didn't come close to the talent level of having arguably the greatest power forward and the greatest true point guard on the same team at the same time in their prime. Hubie Brown didn't win an NBA title but got in as a Contributor in 2005 on the strength of his broadcasting work combined with success on the sidelines, which includes the 1975 ABA championship. "Nellie had his detractors," said one long-time NBA executive who never had a Hall of Fame vote with Nelson on the ballot. "He was not universally loved. There was always a certain controversy with Nellie. But the numbers don't lie." The 1,335-win number most of all. "He could be bristly and prickly and unconventional and radical," the executive said. "Nellie was a controversial character. With owners, he'd usually depart with harsh feelings. He would not win a lot of popularity contests. But he was an innovative coach, and the most remarkable thing was his longevity." NBA.com

The Nelson debate says as much about the Hall as about the coach. Few candidacies say more, in fact, about the cliquish nature of the voting than the former Bucks, Warriors, Knicks and Mavericks coach passing Lenny Wilkens for No. 1 on the all-time win list in April 2010. In the very next election cycle, announced in February of 2011, he didn't so much as make the list of finalists. "I can't speak for the people who voted," said Hall chairman Jerry Colangelo about the people who vote but can't speak either. "It's a matter of votes." NBA.com

March 24, 2012 Updates
March 20, 2012 Updates

As for the tension between Nelson and Mullin ... Nellie stood and immediately moved to embrace his former player (and, later, the GM who lured him out of retirement) at the press gathering. The relationship between the two may still be strained, but there appears to be some thawing. In contrast to his speech during his enshrinement last summer at the Hall of Fame, Mullin repeatedly and emphatically praised Nelson during his formal and informal chats with media members. Sacramento Bee

Nelson said he'll finally be getting his college degree in May. He'll be earning his bachelor's degree in physical education from the University of Iowa. Nelson, 71, said he plans to attend the commencement ceremony with about 45 friends and family in attendance. Contra Costa Times

February 24, 2012 Updates

Miller was joined Friday by three other first-time finalists _ five-time NCAA Final Four coach Rick Pitino, former NBA coach Bill Fitch and two-time Olympic gold medalist Katrina McClain. Previous finalists on the ballot again are Nelson, Maurice Cheeks, Bernard King, Dick Motta, Hank Nichols, Ralph Sampson, Jamaal Wilkes and the All-American Red Heads, known as the female version of the Harlem Globetrotters and the first women’s professional basketball team. Washington Times

January 15, 2012 Updates
December 11, 2011 Updates

Anyone know where Don Nelson can get an extra 100 tickets for the University of Iowa commencement ceremony next spring? On May 12, almost 50 years after turning in his Hawkeye basketball uniform and leaving Iowa City for the NBA, Nelson will cross the stage at Carver-Hawkeye Arena and collect the diploma he’d always wanted but, until recently, never knew he’d earned. Approaching 72, he wants to share the moment with friends and family, which includes his wife, Joy, five children and 13 grandkids. “It’s a big day in my life,” Nelson says from Dallas. Des Moines Register

November 5, 2011 Updates

According to SportsBusiness Daily: Former NBA coach DON NELSON will graduate from college “almost 50 years after being” drafted in the ’62 NBA Draft. Nelson “plans to go through the University of Iowa commencement service in the spring of 2012, having fulfilled the necessary credits for his bachelor’s degree.” IamaGM.com

October 15, 2011 Updates

Chamberlain kept his dogs in the car during early 1970s shootarounds. That wasn’t the case with former NBA coach Don Nelson. “He’d have his dog (Bucky) on the court, and he would come out on the court and take a leak," Indiana forward Mike Dunleavy remembers about playing for Nelson with Golden State in 2006-07. “Our trainer would have to come out and wipe it up." Boston forward Troy Murphy, then also with the Warriors, said basketball sometimes would continue before the trainer got out a sponge. “(Bucky) would eat an omlette before shootaround and then go out and piss on the floor," Murphy said. “You’d kind of have to dribble around it to get your shots up." Karl said players used to bring their dogs to San Antonio shootarounds in the mid 1970s when he was a player. That sometimes turned out to be quite an adventure. “We started having fights with dogs at shootaround," Karl said. FOXSports Florida

September 27, 2011 Updates
September 9, 2011 Updates

I hear Kahn has told others in the league that the next coach will be either Adelman or Don Nelson. That goes with what I heard six weeks ago, that he told other GMs he isn’t hiring another relatively unproven coach after the failed Kurt Rambis experiment. And that means choosing one of the proven four 60- or 70-something coaches – Bernie Bickerstaff and Larry Brown are the others -- they interviewed. Nelson, 71, probably would sign a three-year deal at $10 million total (excluding incentives) or less. Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Any rumor missing? E-mail us at   hoopshype@hoopshype.com.