David Griffin knows he has to get this hiring right.
It’s the hardest part of the job, Pelicans’ vice president of basketball operations reminded us two weeks ago, hours after he fired Alvin Gentry.
At the time, there were only two other job opportunities as a head coach in the NBA. Now, after a not-so-surprising layoff on Monday and a rather shocking Tuesday, there are four.
When the Philadelphia 76ers started the week off by getting rid of Brett Brown followed by the Indiana Pacers who fired Nate McMillan, the task of finding the perfect fit for the Pelicans just got a little more difficult.
The Pelicans now join those two teams, along with the Brooklyn Nets and the Chicago Bulls, in an attempt to find the man (or perhaps what would be a woman who makes history) to fill the void.
The New Orleans Pelicans are separating from Alvin Gentry.
So while Griffin likely has several options to explore, those options also have their options to explore.
Here is the good news. Actually two good news.
First, the Pelicans have Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram. Both of these pieces will make this a job that many coaches will want.
And second, there are a lot of good coaches to go around with.
Pelicans simply won’t have their first dibs.
Of the initial five, I would rank the Pelicans’ work in the middle of the pack in the pecking order if I were a coach looking to land in the ideal spot.
The New Orleans Pelicans season is over, but for the rest of the NBA the “second season” has just begun.
This ranking depends on what a candidate is looking for.
If you are a manager looking for instant success and the easiest path to an NBA title, the job of the Nets is the obvious choice.
Heck, you probably won’t even have to wait long.
Kevin Durant, who lost the entire season to recover from an Achilles injury, is back to play alongside Kyrie Irving and DeAndre Jordan and a roster that has claimed seventh seed in the Eastern Conference makes them an immediate contender to finish. to the finals.
The Nets are one of three playoff teams looking for a manager, joining the Pacers and 76ers. Assuming the 76ers keep Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid, which CEO Elton Brand has said he wants to do, then that job will also top the list.
The 76ers, after all, are only a year away from getting that close to the Eastern Conference Finals. Kawhi Leonard, who was playing for the eventual Toronto Raptors champion at the time, drained a Race 7 buzzer from the corner to take out the 76ers who still seemed to recover from heartbreak.
A coach who feels they can put the stars Simmons and Embiid on the same page would probably seize the opportunity to coach such a tradition-rich franchise in the easier to navigate through the Eastern Conference.
But the Pelicans’ work isn’t too far off, especially with the chance to coach and develop Williamson, potentially the face of the NBA someday. It’s a young enough roster team with resources to add to it.
“Frankly, we have a job that we believe will be the most interesting in the NBA,” Griffin said two weeks ago.
OK, so it’s a little tough, especially as long as the Nets have a vacancy to fill. But it is definitely one that will be coveted by many. People like Ty Lue, Kenny Atkinson, Ime Udoka, Becky Hammon, Adrian Griffin, Darvin Ham and McMillan would probably have jumped at the opportunity. The only drawback, of course, is that you are still training in the Western Conference, where all eight playoff teams made the playoffs good enough to make next season’s playoffs. And that doesn’t even include the Golden State Warriors, who will no doubt be back in the mix next season.
Griffin said it wasn’t going to be a quick process. He wants to take his time and make sure he finds the perfect solution.
And with some other interesting openings, he’ll have to hope that the perfect fit sees New Orleans as perfect too.
The New Orleans Pelicans are on the hunt for a new coach. After firing Alvin Gentry on Saturday, they are looking for a successor who c …
It’s been five years since a jovial, champagne-soaked Alvin Gentry looked into the television cameras and made that bold proclamation while we …