Jeff Van Gundy Rumors

Van Gundy, who serves as part of ABC’s NBA Finals broadcast crew along with Mike Breen, former coach and player Mark Jackson and Doris Burke, didn’t stop his praise there. “I think he was masterful in, he simplified the game,” Van Gundy said. “You know, he might have had one idea in how he was gonna come in and play, and then he saw what the players could do, should do and were willing to do and he modified his approach and it’s been very successful.”

Jeff Van Gundy meets with Pelicans

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The New Orleans Pelicans’ coaching search is gathering momentum, a process that included a formal interview Tuesday with Jeff Van Gundy, league sources told Yahoo Sports. Van Gundy, one of the NBA’s top available coaches, and New Orleans officials met in the Bay Area to discuss the opening. The sides had spoken over the phone, but this was the first face-to-face meeting, league sources said.
Other teams have moved on or, at least, have given the appearance of moving on. There are still those around the league who feel that New Orleans and Orlando want Thibodeau and have come up with candidates like Scott Skiles for the Magic and Jeff Van Gundy (Thibodeau’s friend and mentor) for the Pelicans in order to spook the Bulls into simply letting Thibodeau go. If their new candidates are decoys, that’s a high-stakes game of chicken for the Pels and/or Magic. Either way, whether by straight firing or some form of trade, Bulls players are expecting to call a new guy “coach” next season.
Jeff Van Gundy declined to acknowledge on the “Dan Patrick Show” on Wednesday if he has been contacted by the New Orleans Pelicans for their vacant head-coaching job. But Van Gundy didn’t make a point to publicly deny his interest in replacing Monty Williams and coaching superstar forward Anthony Davis. When asked on the show if he would like to coach Davis, Van Gundy said: ”There is no one who ever coached that wouldn’t want to coach a great player with great character. And so I’ve been able to do that in my life. I’ve already coached a player with a great character and you know how important that is if you want to win big in a situation. I had Patrick Ewing, Yao Ming and (Tracy) McGrady in Houston, (Charles) Oakley and all these guys. Anybody who that says, nah … I wouldn’t want to coach (Davis) who is a top-five player and a great person, I wouldn’t believe that if someone said that.”
It has been three weeks since the New Orleans Pelicans fired coach Monty Williams and there has only been one acknowledged interview, of Golden State Warriors’ assistant Alvin Gentry. Meanwhile, two candidates, former Knicks and Rockets coach Jeff Van Gundy and Kentucky coach John Calipari have contacted the Pelicans to relate their interest in the positions. But no hire seems imminent at this point.
The Celtics gambled on freshman James Young in last year’s draft and he spent most of his rookie season in the NBADL, contributing little to the Celtics’ playoff run. The ABC television analyst duo of Mark Jackson and Jeff Van Gundy, both former head coaches, tackled the question of drafting for the present or for the future. “I think one thing you have to have is great and realistic ownership, outstanding management, and outstanding scouting departments because there’s coaches in this league, you don’t get to see as many of these guys live or, you know, you’re worried about the team that you’re coaching,” Jackson said. “So you’ve got to trust the scouting department and trust people. Different teams have the luxury of where they can wait on guys, and there are teams obviously in this lottery this year that need immediate help. So it’s important to understand that you’re not going to turn a franchise around with a lottery pick, whether it be a No. 1, a No. 7, what have you, immediately.
Van Gundy joins Golden State associate head coach Alvin Gentry and Chicago Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau as confirmed candidates for the position, according to NBA coaching sources. Gentry is the only candidate known to have formally interviewed for the post, with sources saying the uncertainty surrounding Thibodeau’s contractual situation with the Bulls has prevented the Pelicans and Orlando Magic from formally requesting to interview him. ESPN.com reported Monday that the Pelicans had been granted permission to interview Gentry before the Warriors began play in the Western Conference finals.
Although sources have not confirmed, potential candidates for the Pelicans’ vacancy could include former Oklahoma City Thunder coach Scott Brooks, former Golden State Warriors coach Mark Jackson, Warriors current lead assistant Alvin Gentry, Pacers assistant and former Trail Blazers head coach Nate McMillan, former Sacramento Kings and Pelicans assistant Mike Malone, Chicago Bulls assistant Adrian Griffin,University of Kentucky coach John Calipari, former New York Knicks and Houston Rockets Jeff Van Gundy.