The Athletic has learned through league sources that the Magic have asked permission to interview Phoenix Suns assistant coach Willie Green, Milwaukee Bucks assistant coach Charles Lee and Brooklyn Nets assistant coach Ime Udoka. Green, 39, is completing his fifth season as an NBA assistant coach. A former NBA shooting guard, Green worked three seasons as an assistant coach/player development for the Golden State Warriors under Steve Kerr before he joined Monty Williams’ coaching staff in Phoenix in 2019.
The Magic have begun their interview process, sources said, but their coaching search is expected to be wide-ranging and almost certainly will include candidates in addition to Green, Hammon, Kidd, Lee, Udoka and Unseld. Tyrone Corbin, Pat Delany and Steve Hetzel — assistant coaches under Clifford who currently remain under contract with Orlando — could be interviewed, if they haven’t been interviewed already. Many league insiders who work for other teams think the Magic could have interest in as many as three members of the LA Clippers’ coaching staff: associate head coach Dan Craig and assistant coaches Kenny Atkinson and Chauncey Billups.
Last week, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Penny was receiving interest from NBA teams. On his podcast this week, FOX Sports college basketball analyst Aaron Torres said that he has heard similar talk. Torres specifically said there is some buzz about Hardaway possibly going to the Magic. There is history between Hardaway and the Magic that makes sense for him to be a candidate.
In talking to people that are around Jason Kidd, and one source, in particular, had mentioned to me that Orlando reminds Kidd a lot of when he took over in Milwaukee. Kidd loves to teach and develop guys, and he enjoys those challenges. One source close to Kidd felt he’d be excited about potentially being in the mix for the Orlando Magic job.
Michael Singer: Orlando has requested an interview with #Nuggets assistant Wes Unseld Jr. for its head coaching vacancy, league sources told @denverpost. The Nuggets promoted Unseld Jr. to associate head coach at the start of this season & he's been an invaluable piece to Malone's staff.
Mark Giannotto: Penny Hardaway to @Greg_Gaston and @Eli Savoie about Orlando Magic job: "I’m definitely flattered by that situation. My heart is in Memphis. I’m here. I love the Tigers. I love our fans. I started off doing something and I want to finish that."
August 2, 2021 | 7:49 am EDT Update
There is a strong possibility that Howard returns for a third go-around with the Lakers. Howard won a title with the Lakers in 2020, but he bolted to the 76ers last season. Now, there appears to be interest on both sides to have Howard back for his physical and defensive play. Howard, 35, averaged 7.0 points and 8.4 rebounds in 17.3 minutes last season in Philadelphia, his 17th in the NBA.
Rob Schaefer: Zach LaVine on what he’s conveyed to Bulls about a potential extension. If Bulls decide to take route to cap space, pursuing upgrades through free agency or renegotiating + extending LaVine’s current contract are two options on table.
Barry Jackson: ESPN reports tonight that New Orleans and Dallas – two Lowry suitors – have begun to look elsewhere for point guards. The Dragic/Achiuwa package should get this done for Lowry barring any late issues; Achiuwa hasn’t yet been informed because talks can’t begin until 6 p.m. Monday.
Donatas Urbonas: Ignas Brazdeikis will play for the Orlando Magic in the NBA Summer League, per sources. Brazdeikis averaged 11.1 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 2 assists in 8 NBA games with Orlando last season.
Rob Schaefer: Zach LaVine on keeping up with Bulls’ free agency from Tokyo: “I should have a good idea what’s going on. I take that very serious, keep up to date with what’s going on back home, but obviously still get my rest cause we got a game tomorrow. One way or another I’ll find out.”
August 2, 2021 | 1:19 am EDT Update
“It looks like [Kawhi] is expected to re-sign with the Clippers, but sources informed me that he will listen to other teams.” @ChrisBHaynes on Kawhi Leonard’s free agency
Sources tell cleveland.com the Cavs are no longer expected to pursue Los Angeles Lakers free agent guard Alex Caruso or Indiana Pacers pesky reserve TJ McConnell — both of whom will garner interest from several suitors and could command the full mid-level exception, which starts around $9.5 million.