Rick Pitino Rumors

That summer, Pitino took the head-coaching job at University of Kentucky, where he later won a national championship. His Knicks’ 3-point-attempts record would stand untouched until five seasons later, when the Houston Rockets won back-to-back titles in the mid-90s, in part by embracing the shortened 3-point line. “In the beginning, everybody thought I was a mad scientist,” Pitino says of his use of the 3-pointer. “In the end, everybody realized how potent a weapon it was.”
The reason didn’t matter. What did were the terms of the deal he signed and who he signed it with: a $1.275 million contract to play a single 30-35 game season for the Guangdong Southern Tigers of the Chinese Basketball Association. That’s $1.275 million, mostly tax-free, for five months of work. Moreover, the season ends in March, allowing him plenty of time to prep for next June’s NBA draft. It’s a lot more than tuition, room and board offered by SMU and more than enough to spin heads all over the recruiting trail. “I think the new snack money will convince kids to go to school,” joked Louisville coach Rick Pitino as he watched the AAU Nationals here earlier this month, referencing the NCAA initiative to provide unlimited food to players. “We’ve got free Power Bars,” he continued.
Louisville Coach Rick Pitino was even asked if he thought Donovan would want to coach the Knicks. Pitino was coach of the Knicks from 1987 to 1989 and had Donovan on the roster. Donovan also played for Pitino at Providence. “He would never coach the Knicks,” Pitino said. “I know him. He grew up in New York, but he’s not a New Yorker.” Asked if he was still a Knicks fan, Donovan said: “I love the Knicks. I grew up buying $5 tickets in Madison Square Garden and sneaking my way down as close as I could to the court.”
In 1998, you applied to be the general manager of the Denver Nuggets—while working for the Post. This has always struck me as a conflict of interest. Tell me why I’m wrong. And do you think you would have/could have had a fruitful career as a GM. Peter Vecsey.: I was always told, you’ve got to have at least two conflicts of interest to be successful. Pro sports has plenty of former sportswriters-turned executives. The Knicks were started by Ned Irish. The latest example was John Hollinger leaving ESPN to become VP of basketball operations of Memphis. Why shouldn’t we be allowed to pursue front office or coaching, as long as it’s during the off-season? I tried to put together group to buy the Nuggets in the early ’80s … tried to get Rick Pitino to hire me as GM when he was running the Celtics … approached Larry Brown about helping him in Washington when he was close to coaching the Wizards … had an interview on tap as Hawks’ GM just before Stan Kasten left … and had a very brief interview with James Dolan to be Isiah Thomas’ GM. I am positive I would’ve been an asset to one and all.
Walter McCarty’s education as a coach came from a very unpopular voice here in Boston. But without it, the former Celtics reserve forward might not be answering questions as a new assistant for Brad Stevens. McCarty — who was hired by Stevens to fill out the Celtics coaching staff with Ron Adams and Micah Shrewsberry, along with holdovers Jamie Young and Jay Larranaga — spent three seasons, starting in 2007, as an assistant coach at the University of Louisville under his former C’s coach Rick Pitino. It was there where he learned the intricacies of what a coach does behind the scenes, and how to find a voice as an assistant from a guy who has brought three different programs to the Final Four. “Working for Rick Pitino taught me a lot. It really prepared me for how to prepare for opponents, how to scout games, how to teach and develop players, and how to speak and communicate with players, as well,” McCarty said from the Celtics practice facilities before a private basketball clinic with MarShon Brooks for YMCA of Greater Boston youth yesterday.
On Monday night, the Louisville star’s father initially told reporters that his son had planned to enter the NBA draft following his team’s run to the national title in Atlanta. Smith confirmed his father’s statement when he told SiriusXM “College Sports Nation” radio hosts Mark Packer and Bruce Pearl that “this is the right time” the following day. But Rick Pitino, who had also confirmed Smith’s departure at the team’s pep rally earlier this week, said Thursday morning that the junior guard is still on the fence about going pro. “Russ, I think, is 50-50,” he told Sports Radio 790 in Louisville. “He’s a very confused young man in terms of his decision right now. He didn’t want his dad to say that about him coming out. He wanted time to think of it.”
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Pitino, who was preparing to lead Louisville in the NCAA championship game against Michigan Monday night at the Georgia Dome, became eligible two years ago. For King and Guerin, the recognition was regarded by many as long overdue. “This was not on my radar, so it came as a little bit of a surprise,” said King, 56, a Knick from 1982-87. “I’m just deeply honored to know I’m going to be included in the Hall among the all-time greats. I’m delighted and moved.” Guerin, 80, said he is glad it happened “before I go to the other side of the grass.” Guerin, a Knick from 1956-63 before going to the Hawks as a player-coach, was chosen by the Veterans Committee. “It’s very special,” he said. “You always dream that someday it might happen. As it got further and further along, you started to doubt it that much more.”
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Win or lose at the Final Four, Louisville coach Rick Pitino will leave Atlanta with a greater legacy than the one he arrived with — he has won induction into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, a source told ESPNNewYork.com on Friday. Pitino, 60, will be introduced with the rest of the 2013 Hall of Fame class Monday before a national championship game he hopes to be coaching in. His Cardinals will face Wichita State in Saturday’s semifinals, and the winner will face the survivor of the Syracuse-Michigan game that follows.
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“Pitino has squeezed the hell out of those guys,” said one NBA player personnel director, who spoke to USA TODAY Sports on the condition of anonymity because league rules prohibit discussing underclassmen. “I don’t see any of them being consistently in a (NBA) rotation. I’m not even sold on Dieng.” Two other league executives – one in both the Eastern and Western Conferences – shared that view of the Louisville roster, projecting Dieng as a late first-round pick and junior guard Russ Smith as a possibility in the second round. And though several other Cardinals will be on the NBA’s radar including senior point guard Peyton Siva, sophomore forward Chane Behanan and freshman forward Montrezl Harrell (who might be the best long-term prospect of the group), it is atypical for such a powerful college basketball team to draw so little excitement from NBA scouts.