The NBA Coaching Carousel Goes Round
Anybody else bored by the lack of NBA action in the past week?
I know I'm going out of my mind waiting for the NBA Finals after watching the disappointment that was the Conference stage.
This eight-day waiting period sucks to the point that when Cleveland LeBron’s -- I mean Cavaliers -- tangle at long last with Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors, it'd better feel like getting a puppy for Christmas.
Still, the calm before that NBA Finals storm wasn't completely devoid of any NBA news.
We've seen the top three coaching vacancies in the league get filled. Orlando, New Orleans, and Chicago are now off the market.
The Magic was the first to ink a new leader, selecting veteran Scott Skiles. According to Adrian Wojnarowski, the former Magic stalwart's deal is for four years and a yet-to-be-disclosed dollar amount.
Skiles will be tasked with bringing together Orlando’s young core in hopes of finding success in the post-Dwight Howard era. Being as how they're in the East, Year 1 of his era could be kind.
The Pelicans were next up, also opting for a veteran coach in Alvin Gentry, who most recently served as an assistant coach for the Dubs.
Gentry will receive a four-year, $13.75million deal. He got the job over other veteran options, such as Jeff Van Gundy, former Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro, and -- you guessed it -- Tom Thibodeau. Rumor has it that Anthony Davis's college honcho, John Calipari, was a candidate, but the master of One & Done said no.
Reports have surfaced that Gentry wants to give The Brow a larger role in the team’s offense. Well, duh.
That leaves the Bulls, whose management well and truly threw Thibodeau under the bus:
The tension between Thibs and Bulls management was widely reported throughout the season. Thus, his firing was a mere formality when it happened. Leaving for a while like they did was likely management's version of twisting the knife.
The Bulls didn't mourn the fresh corpse of their coach, either, as rumors of a reported deal with Iowa State's Fred Hoiberg quickly arose. Now, they're facts. The Bulls and Hoiberg have agreed to a deal that spans five years and approximately $25million.
So, now it's Hoiberg's turn to do the one thing that Thibs could not: beat the
Miami Cleveland LeBrons.
In the meantime Thibodeau will probably sit out the year, unless he opts to take the far-from-tantalizing Denver Nuggets job. Don’t cry for Tommy Boy; he'll still be collecting checks from his former team. $9million, to be exact.
So the NBA coaching carousel goes round and round. It stops only to let its most recent victims depart and take on future victims. Some are veterans of its dizzying nature. Others are rookies who haven't yet been introduced to its wicked spin cycle.
But they will soon enough.