NBA rumors: Jacque Vaughn a serious candidate for Pelicans' job?

The candidacy of Jacque Vaughn as head coach of the New Orleans Pelicans is “gaining traction”, according to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst. Vaughn was previously head coach of the Orlando Magic and has been an assistant coach with the Brooklyn Nets since 2016.

More on Pelicans Coaching Job

One reason for optimism is that several NBA sources tell The Undefeated that there is high interest from teams to hire African American coaches who could perhaps relate more strongly with the league’s predominantly Black players. ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan said on The Jump on June 17 that the Celtics want to hire “a coach of color” in acknowledged efforts to bring diversity to their franchise. Other sources said the Pelicans would like to add an African American head coach who could relate well with star forward Zion Williamson and the Wizards are interested in hiring a Black head coach, too.
Will Guillory: Griffin says he spoke with Teresa Weatherspoon today. He said her candidacy is “premature” and people may have read too much into her being named the team’s Summer League coach.
The New Orleans Pelicans are planning to interview Lue in the near future too, sources said. Lue and Pelicans Executive VP of Basketball Operations David Griffin have strong ties, most notably working together to win an NBA title in Cleveland in 2016.
With such so much on the line, it will be important for the Pelicans to conduct a thorough search process and not rush the decision. Griffin has probably been thinking of potential targets for a while now, but some surprise candidates could reveal themselves in the days ahead. The best person might not be on the list of obvious candidates NBA insiders will promote in the days ahead. Payton had no name recognition or head coaching experience when Loomis hired him to lead the Saints in 2006, and the team has never been the same since. Griffin said he plans to take his time, and that’s exactly what he should do.
Danny Leroux: I have been banging this drum for a while but it feels like this is setting up for D’Antoni coaching the Pelicans. Kurt Helin: I mentioned this on the radio in New Orleans yesterday. D'Antoni to the Pelicans (after the Rockets are eliminated) is something to watch.
Scott Kushner: A lot of names will be bandied about in the next few days. The No. 1 priority is finding someone who is capable of connecting with Zion Williamson and building a trust with him to fully unleash him. I don’t think NBA HC experience matters. Personality does.
Marc Stein: Clippers assistant coach Ty Lue and Lakers assistant coach Jason Kidd are expected to be prime candidates for the Pelicans' coaching vacancy, league sources say, with Lue and Kidd also both on the Nets' list of prospective candidates when Brooklyn's search starts in earnest soon
Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry worked with Griffin with the Suns, and he interviewed Griffin for the Cavaliers' head coaching job that eventually went to David Blatt. Gentry is a favorite of the organization, and he was expected to return next season regardless of the front office hiring, sources said.
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