James Borrego Rumors
Rick Bonnell: I asked James Borrego pre-game if we’re going to see much uptick in @TonyParker minutes going forward. Borrego said he certainly doesn’t expect a steady diet of 30-minute nights like Saturday, but he’ll do what it takes to win close ones.
First-time coaches: Given their own needs and seeing some recent success from other rebuilding franchises, the Cavs will most likely go in this direction. Atlanta seems to have found its franchise leader for the new era, hiring Lloyd Pierce, a guy on the coaching radar for years. He is the kind of leader that will be able to grow with the team’s young nucleus. James Borrego worked his way up and ultimately landed with the Charlotte Hornets. J.B. Bickerstaff is another example. And while Kenny Atkinson was a bit older and more seasoned, based on a few years overseas following a well-traveled playing career, his work in player development has a few NBA teams, including the Cavs, wondering if there’s another out there. Jordi Fernandez, Denver Nuggets – Fernandez seems to check a lot of boxes for Cleveland. He’s 36 years old, the kind of coach who can relate with the numerous youngsters on the roster. Player development will be key in this search and Fernandez spent four years on the Cavaliers staff in that capacity before becoming an assistant in the G League.
But when James Borrego mentioned he was strongly considering adding an assistant coach he was familiar with from their days together in Orlando to his new staff with the Hornets, Kemba Walker was downright giddy. He could barely hold back the tidal wave of enthusiasm racing through his 28-year-old body as the name “Jay Hernandez” rolled off Borrego’s tongue. “I was excited just because I lost my whole coaching staff, guys who I was used to for the last four years,” Walker told The Athletic. “And Jay is a guy who makes me comfortable and I just know what he brings. So for me, shit I was excited man. I was super happy to have him around because they brought in a guy that I know, that knows me. I know him and it’s been a long time since I worked with him. But yeah man, it was exciting because I couldn’t work with him in the summer when he was in Orlando. So that sucked for a very long time. To get back with him, I was hyped.”
“One of the first things that jumped out at me is Kemba is so much better than I thought,” Kupchak said. “He does not get the kind of (star) exposure. He’s getting it now because of the way he started the season, but I had no idea how good this kid is.” He tabbed former Spurs assistant James Borrego as the team’s head coach and, in July, he traded former Lakers center Dwight Howard. Kupchak holds the coveted dual title of president of basketball operations and general manager. He focuses solely on basketball, whereas he said he “had more responsibility in L.A. in other business areas.”