HoopsHype Flip Saunders rumors

June 7, 2014 Updates

Saunders appeared on KFAN 100.3 and spoke about Love. Host: “Doesn’t he have a right to be frustrated?” Saunders: “No.” Host: “You don’t think so?” Saunders: “Just like I told Garnett, he didn’t have a right to be frustrated. Why does any player have a right to be frustrated? You’re either part of the problem or part of the solution.” Saunders: “Should the team be frustrated? Yeah, the team can be frustrated. But I don’t think any one individual should be frustrated.” NBCSports.com

June 6, 2014 Updates

A decision on the future of Love has not been made, Saunders said. He will no doubt make every effort to convince the All-Star forward to stay here. “We probably have 16 teams that have called us,” Saunders said, regarding interest in Love around the league. “We haven’t called anybody.” Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Regarding Love’s recent weekend visit to Boston, Saunders said he didn’t know if it had any connection with basketball. “I don’t think [the] Boston [Celtics] had anything to do with it. But I don’t know,” he said. Minneapolis Star-Tribune

The one exception in Saunders’ mind was if he could get a superstar coach to guide the Wolves. And Saunders said he tried, starting out with his former ESPN colleague Jeff Van Gundy. “The first guy that I went to and tried to get was Jeff Van Gundy. He was the first guy,” Saunders said Thursday, when word came out that he would coach the Wolves next season. “… He’s a guy that Glen and I were comfortable [with] and would have hired him off the bat. I feel like he’s the best coach, the best coach out there and has a lot of the same philosophies. “As Jeff said to me, I talked to him this morning, and he said, ‘Whenever I go somewhere I want to feel that I’m the right guy for that job.’ He said, ‘The reason I didn’t go to Minnesota was because I felt you were the right guy for the job, not me, and I was uncomfortable.’ ” Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Saunders didn’t offer the job to Memphis Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger as reported, though they did have discussions. Joerger, a Staples, Minn., native, ended up signing a contract extension with the Grizzlies on May 27. “First of all, the interview process was interesting,” Saunders said. “We talked to a lot of people, a lot of good people. Some college guys, [Michigan State’s] Tom Izzo is a friend of mine, [Iowa State’s] Freddie Hoiberg. When you go through that situation they have things they want to do. To coach at [the NBA] level is difficult because there’s a lot of factors that get involved. So when it came down to it and we started going through everybody, I went to Glen this week and I said, ‘Here’s some options we have.’ Then Glen said, based on where our team is right now, I think you’re the best viable option to coach this team and move forward.” Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Was Saunders serious about Joerger? “We were serious,” he said. “We never got to a point with anyone — what do people consider? We were going down the road where was he going to be able come, even if he could come? That I don’t know. When you start getting into this there’s a lot of factors that get involved.” Minneapolis Star-Tribune

June 5, 2014 Updates

Timberwolves president of basketball operations Flip Saunders also will be the team’s next coach and will be introduced Friday at a Target Center news conference. He confirmed in a text message this morning that he will coach the team but declined further comment until tomorrow. Minneapolis Star-Tribune

According to sources close to the situation, there is no specified length of time that he’ll coach, although he has suggested before it would only be for a season or two if he did decide to coach. Minneapolis Star-Tribune

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