Tag:Mike Krzyzewski
Posted on: August 10, 2010 6:06 pm
Edited on: August 10, 2010 7:13 pm

Boeheim: Isiah's Knicks deal 'doesn't make sense'

NEW YORK -- Three members of the Team USA coaching staff weighed in Tuesday on the Knicks' controversial hiring of Isiah Thomas as a consultant, with Mike Krzyzewski and Jim Boeheim saying it crossed a line that shouldn't be crossed.

"If it’s good one place, then it’s good anywhere," Boeheim said after the U.S. men's national team scrimmaged on the city's West Side in preparation for the upcoming FIBA World Championships in Turkey. "You throw all that out there, and it wouldn’t be good. It doesn’t make much sense to me. I just don’t think it’s a good thing."

Krzyzewski, head coach of the U.S. team that opened a week-long training camp in New York, was more measured in his opinions on the Knicks' decision to employ Thomas, a former team president and currently an NCAA head coach at Florida International. Saying Thomas is his friend, Krzyzewski stopped short of saying the arrangement was unseemly, but made it clear that it wasn't something he'd do.

But the coach with the largest crowd of reporters around him was the Knicks' Mike D'Antoni, a Team USA assistant who will not be traveling to Turkey as he treats a back problem. D'Antoni struggled to put a positive spin on the return of Thomas to the organization that ousted him after an embarrassing tenure as both team president and coach. Aside from the obvious conflict of interest -- and strong possibility that the hiring is a violation of NBA rules -- some have painted Thomas' return as a reflection of how Madison Square Garden chairman James Dolan views the performance of D'Antoni and team president Donnie Walsh.

Several times during an interview session with reporters on the practice court at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, D'Antoni repeated that Thomas' vaguely defined role within the Knicks' hierarchy is "not my area." D'Antoni said he learned of the decision "like everybody else" -- in a news release distributed Friday by the Knicks.

"He is a Hall of Famer and he’s one of the top 50 players in the game and he has a lot of credibility out there," D'Antoni said. "Donnie is very smart to be able to tap into him when he needs him, and if it’s an advantage to the Knicks, we’ll use it. That’s about all there is. There’s not a whole lot else to it."

Asked if the Knicks' attempt to bring Thomas back into the power structure from which he was ousted only two years ago reflected poorly on Walsh's standing with Dolan, D'Antoni said, "Donnie is running the show. He’s made some unbelievable moves up til now and we’ve got a nice young team coming on. I hate all the hoopla on the other end, but we should be focused on the upcoming season. That’s kind of what I’m focused on."

Dolan's decision to re-employ Thomas, according to sources, stemmed from the team's disappointing recruitment of top free agents this summer. After the team fell short in its pursuit of LeBron James and Dwyane Wade -- who united with Chris Bosh in Miami -- some elements within the organization became convinced that the team needed someone of Thomas' stature as a Hall of Fame player to close the deal with future free agents Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul or Tony Parker. Thomas, in fact, sold himself to Dolan as having played an important role in the Knicks' signing of Amar'e Stoudemire and also secured an 11th-hour meeting with James' representatives in a failed attempt to steer him to the Knicks.

But even if the Knicks attempted to narrowly define Thomas' role simply as a free-agent recruiter, sources have told CBSSports.com that the arrangement will nonetheless have a difficult time withstanding the test of the NBA rulebook. The league's constitution and by-laws explicitly forbid any NBA coach, scout, executive or consultant from having contact with draft-ineligible players -- an obvious requirement of an NCAA coach's job. League officials and lawyers are in the process of reviewing the legality of Thomas' hiring.

Boeheim, whose Syracuse team famously lost the 1987 NCAA championship game to Thomas' alma mater, Indiana, on Keith Smart's game-winning shot, doesn't need lawyers to tell him the arrangement makes no sense.

"You would maybe understand it if it was a guy that was retired and had tremendous success in the NBA and won something -- anything," Boeheim said. "And somebody said, 'Well, why don’t you just give us your sense of things.' I could see that. But I can't see this."

Posted on: February 13, 2010 12:54 am

Colangelo on Nets: If someone asks, he'll talk

DALLAS -- Jerry Colangelo said Friday he's had no contact with the Nets about taking over their basketball operations, a move that could lead to his sidekick from USA Basketball, Mike Krzyzewski, joining him as coach. But if a team wanted to talk to him about getting back into the business of running an NBA team, Colangelo said he'd listen.

"I don’t feel compelled to do anything because I'm very happy with where I am in life," Colangelo said after a news conference announcing the 19 finalists for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. "That’s how I really feel. I've had a great run. I've been blessed with a lot of success. But I'm not compelled to do a thing other than what I really enjoy doing. And so I'm never out there soliciting or looking for anything. Whenever opportunity knocks at the door, I think it’s incumbent upon anyone to talk. But I couldn’t be happier where I am."

Yahoo! Sports and the Record of Hackensack (N.J.) reported Friday that Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov, the incoming Nets owner, seeks to install the dream team of Colangelo and Krzyzewski to a franchise that is on pace to equal the worst record in NBA history this season -- the 9-73 mark established by the 1972-73 Philadelphia 76ers. The connection is easy to decipher.

After restoring USA Basketball to its former glory with a gold-medal performance at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Colangelo has the unwavering respect of Olympians from that team -- several of whom have the chance to become unrestricted free agents on July 1. The Nets are close to clearing enough salary cap space to sign two free agents to the maximum contracts allowed under the current collective bargaining agreement. At various times, the best of those potential free agents -- LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh -- have openly speculated about what it would be like to play on the same team.

As the architect of the Redeem Team last summer, Colangelo would be in a unique position to sell players on joining him in his next rebuilding job. Even as he assembles his roster for the World Championships in Turkey this summer, Colangelo won't have to solicit job offers from any number of cap-clearing teams. They'll come to him, for obvious reasons.

Speaking Friday at All-Star media day, Wade reiterated that he wants to stay in Miami and attract a second star player to join him. The Heat currently are positioned better than any other team for the 2010 free-agent bonanza, having Wade and enough cap space to sign another superstar. The Chicago Bulls are feverishly working on several trades that would put them on even footing with Miami and the Nets in that pursuit.

Prokhorov's possible interest in Colangelo has thrown team president Rod Thorn's future into doubt. The Record reported that Thorn's scheduled meeting with Prokhorov in Dallas this weekend was up in the air. By denying contact -- but not interest -- in the Nets' job, Colangelo left the door open to fielding Prokhorov's overture.

"In my career, I always had a little bit of an edge in my opinion because of my relationships with players," Colangelo said. "Why? I played. I coached. I was one of them. I remember a collective bargaining session and it was heated. The president (Patrick Ewing), he goes off on the owners. And I'm in the room there, in this conference room. He looks up and he sees me and he says, 'That goes for everybody except Jerry. He’s one of us.' Now that was a little embarrassing with the other guys there, but I always had relationships. I think my ability maybe with this run with USA Basketball was built on that. You can't demand respect. You’ve earned respect over a period of time, and usually it goes both ways."
Posted on: July 7, 2009 9:56 pm

Coach K Back for 2012 Olympics

Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski, who guided Team USA to Olympic gold in Beijing last summer, has decided to accept an invitation to return for the 2010 world championships in Turkey and 2012 Olympics in London, CBSSports.com has confirmed.

The official announcement will come July 22, when Team USA opens a training camp in Las Vegas for players who did not participate in the 2008 Summer Games. Krzyzewski's decision was first reported by the Boston Globe and confirmed to CBSSports.com by a person close to the Duke coach.

Jerry Colangelo, managing director of USA Basketball, had sought a two-year commitment for '10 and '12 from Coach K and existing members of the Olympic team. He declined to confirm Krzyzewski's decision, but said on the phone, "When you have something very positive in place, you do everything you can to try to keep it going. So there’s a lot of reasons to keep everyone in place, and hopefully it works out that way."
Posted on: June 9, 2009 8:50 pm

Coach K not ready to commit to Team USA

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Mike Krzyzewski still isn't ready to renew his commitment to coaching Team USA, despite Jerry Colangelo's best efforts to push him for an answer.

"He was pushing the check," Coach K said of a recent dinner meeting in Chicago with Colangelo, the managing director of USA Basketball.

Krzyzewski said he expects to make a decision by July on whether he will return to the sideline for the 2010 World Championships in Turkey and the '12 Olympics in London. Participating in an announcement of iHoops, a new basketball collaboration among the NBA, NCAA, Nike, and adidas before Game 3 of the NBA Finals Tuesday night, Coach K said he had dinner in Chicago with Colangelo the night before, but didn't give him a commitment yet.

"I've met with Jerry to discuss the future, just these next four years," Krzyzewski said. "... By the time we have our [training camp] in mid-July, I think a lot of things will be put forward at that time. I think that’s a good launching point for USA Basketball."

Just as deftly as he passed on the question of returning to Team USA, Coach K nicely sidestepped a reporter who asked him to compare Kobe Bryant and LeBron James, since he's coached both of them.

"They’re both on my team," Krzyzewski said. "I think in Kobe’s case, in the NBA when you're six years apart, they have dogs’ lives in terms of their career. Kobe’s almost in a different part of his career. You can look at Kobe and say what he’s accomplished and what he’s still accomplishing. LeBron hasn’t done that. But can he do that? Yeah. 

"LeBron is a very very unusual athlete," Coach K said. "He has that tattoo on his back, 'The Chosen One.' One day I said, 'I'm going to get a tattoo. I'm going to get that 'Chosen One' put on my back. He leaned down and said, 'Coach, there’s only one chosen one.' But he could be.

"When it’s all said and done, I think you will be talking about two of the top 10. ... You know what the similarity is? They’re both brilliant and they’re both team guys."

Asked whether he'd want Kobe or LeBron to take the last shot in a game for him, Krzyzewski said, "I’d want LeBron to dribble it and hit Kobe, which is what happened in the Olympics. And we won."
Posted on: June 7, 2009 7:17 pm
Edited on: June 7, 2009 7:25 pm

Jackson: No interest in coaching Team USA

LOS ANGELES -- Phil Jackson has won nine NBA titles and is on the verge of passing the late, great Red Auerbach for the most in league history. USA Basketball has been restored to its rightful place at the top with last summer's gold medal performance in Beijing. And never the twain shall meet, Jackson said Sunday before Game 2 of the NBA Finals.

"There was an opportunity maybe six or eight years ago where Mitch [Kupchak, the Lakers' GM], who served also on the USA Basketball team team council at that time, asked me to be part of that coaching staff," Jackson said. "And I said no, I really didn't. It’s something I've never desired to do, so I opted out at that time. I was asked by the Canadians if I’d like to coach their Olympic team. But Steve Nash wasn’t a mature enough player yet, so I had to turn that one down."

Adding a little Zen to the Olympic experience would seem to be all there is left for Jackson to accomplish in basketball. If the Lakers beat Orlando, Jackson will have two many rings for his fingers; he also won a title as a player with the Knicks. But as far as adding a gold medal to his trophy case, Jackson will have to live vicariously through the players he's coached who've won Olympic gold.

It remains to be seen whether Team USA will be in the market for a new coach. Duke's Mike Krzyzewski, who coached the Americans to the gold medal last summer in Beijing, is mulling whether he will renew his commitment to the team. Jerry Colangelo, the managing director of USA Basketball, is in the process of securing player commitments for the 2010 World Championships in Turkey and the 2012 Olympics in London. Colangelo has said he wants to give Krzyzewski as much time as he needs, while Coach K told the Raleigh News & Observer this week that he hasn't ruled out a return to the Olympic sideline.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com