HoopsHype Vinny Del Negro rumors

June 15, 2013 Updates

Doc Rivers, Boston’s own Hamlet, continues a tumultuous inner debate over whether he is going to return for his 10th season as Celtics coach. Though the Celts are preparing for the worst — two league sources have confirmed to the Herald that Vinny Del Negro would receive serious consideration as Rivers’ replacement — Ainge is said to still believe that Rivers is coming back. “He’s being careful to give (Rivers) space,” said a team source. Boston Herald

June 14, 2013 Updates

Now that the NBA’s prime coaching pool is shrinking by the day as Doc Rivers contemplates his Celtics future, Danny Ainge has no choice but to consider a backup plan if his coach of the last nine seasons leaves. Two league sources with direct knowledge of the situation confirmed yesterday that if Rivers does indeed leave, former Clippers coach Vinnie Del Negro will receive serious consideration as his replacement. Boston Herald

Rivers’ prolonged deliberation has forced Ainge to at least consider alternatives. The Celtics president of basketball operations is an admirer of the Springfield-born Del Negro and his up-tempo philosophy, even if Del Negro reportedly didn’t mesh with his biggest star, Chris Paul. “As a stopgap for that situation, sure,” said one source. “Vinnie would be the perfect person for what they need. All of the all-star coaches, or whatever you want to call them, are going, and knowing how Danny feels about him, (Del Negro) would be a good fit.” Boston Herald

“Vinnie made about $1 million in his last year with the Clippers, so he’s affordable. That’s the way the league is going. Some of these guys, like (Ryan) McDonough, are being paid like head scouts,” the source said of the former Celtics assistant general manager, who is now Suns GM. “The trend is going that way with coaches, too. Vinnie would be the perfect coach for that situation.” Boston Herald

Another issue has become a byproduct of Rivers’ inner debate, according to that same veteran NBA source. While the coach attempts to make up his mind, his assistants live in limbo. Their contracts expire on June 30, and as such, all have been forced into making backup plans of their own. “They’re being forced into looking for work, because they don’t have contracts,” he said. “The assistants really are a key to all of this.” Boston Herald

June 10, 2013 Updates
June 2, 2013 Updates
June 1, 2013 Updates

The Clippers' press release absolving Chris Paul of blame for coach Vinny Del Negro's dismissal was as predictable as the sourced report suggesting Paul is upset that he was being blamed, along with the equally predictable innuendo that admitting the truth -- er, not providing cover -- for Paul might convince him to leave L.A. for more accommodating pastures. As one source said, "The only way he leaves LA is if he changes agents." Sulia

May 31, 2013 Updates

After the best regular season in franchise history, the Los Angeles Clippers let head coach Vinny Del Negro hit free agency without renewing his contract. In an exclusive phone interview with HOOPSWORLD, Del Negro said that Clippers owner Donald Sterling made the final call. “It was Mr. Sterling’s decision,” Del Negro said. “In the end, they did what they felt was best for their organization.” “It’s always difficult when you part ways… the disappointment is not being able to stay and finish the job,” Del Negro continued. “I was very happy to be part of that group that was able to have a lot of success in a short period of time.” HoopsWorld

Paul was a game-changer and Del Negro would half-jokingly call the team’s offense “the Chris Paul system.” “Chris is a pass-first point guard. Guys love playing with him,” Del Negro said. “There were some limitations in the roster, but Chris is such a fantastic player and clutch player, he makes it work.” Del Negro is also proud of how well his team developed defensively. “What people don’t talk about is how much we improved defensively from last year to this year in almost every statistical category other than probably our three-point defense,” Del Negro said. “We led the league in steals and points off turnovers.” HoopsWorld

Chris Paul is upset with the Los Angeles Clippers organization because he is being widely blamed for the firing of Vinny Del Negro as the Clippers' coach, according to a source close to the situation. How much of an impact this will have on Paul's decision to re-sign with the Clippers as a free agent is not clear, but the source conceded that Paul's anger could lead him to look elsewhere. ESPN.com

But a source with knowledge of the situation said Paul refused to get involved in the Clippers' coaching situation and that he wanted nothing to do with the decision to retain or release Del Negro. "Chris made it abundantly clear to the Clippers that he did not want to be involved in any decision about Vinny's future," the source said. "And Blake had nothing to do with it, either." ESPN.com

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