Posted on: January 5, 2012 4:37 pm
By Matt Moore
With the predictable, yet sooner-than-expected firing of Paul Westphal today, the Kings seem to be in disarray. But looking at the roster and the talent available, plus the job being in California (be it Sacramento or Anaheim), you have to consider it to be one of the more attractive positions likely to open this year. Yes, the franchise is in disarray from an ownership and organizational perspective, but this is the NBA. Those things magically fade to the background if you start winning with a talented roster, and the Kings have a talented roster.
So who's on the radar for the Kings? We're going to give you a few options the Kings might explore and how those options play out with the different coaches, but first you need to understand the complexities of the situation.
The Kings are not, publicly or reportedly, under any financial strain, beyond the losses which were poured over in lockout talks. But the Maloofs were hit hard by the economic recession, which helped fuel their desire for the move to Anaheim last year that was thrwarted by the NBA. One of the primay reasons many believed Westphal would not be fired this season was due to the salary that must be paid to him in addition to a new coach. That the Kings felt it was imperative to move on is a good sign for Kings fans, indicating that they're willing to pay out the rest of the deal to get started on a new chapter. Still, the price tag on many of the options below may be too high. The situation in Sacramento goes beyond "get the best coach available."
Keith Smart: In November of 2008, P.J. Carlesimo was fired from the Thunder after a 1-12 start. A young
assistant and former player Scott Brooks took over. Voila. OK, so Keith Smart is 47, and this is his third stint as interim head coach. But if Smart somehow manages to get through to this team (including yes, DeMarcus Cousins), that would be the best possible situation for all. Smart wouldn't cost a fortune and has continuity. Drawbacks? Well, he was part of the horrible start and he's failed to stick at the two previous interim spots. Smart drew mixed reviews in Golden State before the Warriors hired Mark Jackson. He's got his work cut out for him.
Larry Brown: Yahoo Sports already brought up this possibility, via an executive. Brown might be great for DeMarcus Cousins with his brutal, intense ways. It also might detonate. Brown has experience (there's the understatement of the year) and brings a high-value name to the project. But Brown is also renown for crushing the souls and dreams of young guards. Let's see. Tyreke Evans, Marcus Thornton, Jimmer Fredette... yeah, this is like an execution line of hope under Brown. Brown's also 71, so he's not a long-term solution. He's also going to want more organizational control than GM Geoff Petrie is willing to surrender.
Don Nelson: Fast guards that don't play defense and a mercurial, angry forward? What could possibly go wrong here for Nelson? Nelson would likely want more control as well, and is no spring chicken either. But man would that team be fun to watch. This idea's already been floated by the Mercury News.
Mike D'Antoni: See, it's a jump-to-conclusions mat! This one's out there, but it makes so much sense from a strategy standpoint. Say D'Antoni gets scapegoated (already happening) in New York because his front office listened to a former GM that wrecked their franchise and gave up the farm for a high-usage small forward who stuggles with anything except shooting out of ISO sets and rebounding. D'Antoni lands in Sacramento. Warmer weather. An explosive big man who's a bit of an enigma. Multiple players with liquid position skills. And a shoot-first undersized guard. Come on now. You want to watch this. Even a little. This has about zero percent chance of happening, but the idea was so good I couldn't resist listing it.
Phil Jackson: Haha, just kidding.
Mario Elie: Another Kings coach. Elie is popular with the players though, and has a longer history with the team. This is pretty unlikely given the team passing him over once, but if Smart is sent out at season's end after Westphal, Elie might be promoted.
Brian Shaw: The man many felt should have gotten the job in Los Angeles might want the chance to go after his old team. Shaw is a players' coach, which might be just what the Kings need. If he were to want to put the triangle in place, though, run as fast as humanly possible.
Quin Snyder: Snyder worked under the Spurs system in Austin as the Spurs' D-League coach, then as an assistant in Philadelphia under Doug Collins and this season as an assistant for Mike Brown and the Lakers. He's a development coach who can get through to players and has had nothing but good marks since his departure from Missouri. Plus Kings fans could get wigs of the hair, which is fun.
Posted on: November 1, 2011 4:48 pm
Posted by Royce Young
When Phil Jackson stuck to his guns and actually retired, most everyone saw the next man in line to lead the Lakers as Brian Shaw. I mean, he already had Kobe Bryant's stamp of approval. What more do you need?
Evidently, a whole lot.
Shaw spoke with Sports Illustrated in a wonderful extended piece about his path to finding a spot next to Frank Vogel in Indiana as an associate head coach. And it's fairly fascinating. He talked about Phil Jackson's advice about interviewing for jobs, why he thinks he didn't get the Laker job and then there's the part where Larry Bird called the triangle offense "bulls---." Good stuff.
"I talked to him last week," Shaw said of Jackson. "I said to him, 'I never realized how many detractors you have out there.' Because when I go out on head-coaching interviews and if I mention the word 'triangle,' it makes general managers and owners cringe. They don't want to hear about the triangle offense, they don't want to hear about Phil Jackson. It was funny, even when I came here and I sat down with them, jokingly Larry was like, 'I don't want to hear anything about that triangle bull----.' And that's kind of the attitude that everybody has."I sat here for a solid 10 minutes trying to figure out why it would be bad for Shaw to name-drop Jackson in an interview. Because he's got 11 NBA titles? Because he coached Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant? Because most would consider him one of, if not THE top professional sports coach ever? Yeah, don't mention you tutored under that guy. Shaw, continuing:
"Phil let me know going into the interview [with the Lakers] for me to almost disassociate myself from him, that anything that I said about him or the triangle system would hurt me because of his lack of relationship with Jimmy Buss," Shaw said. "So when I did interview, that was the point that I tried to make about the fact that I had played for Phil only my last four years, and that I played for all of these other coaches."
The picture is beginning to clear. More Shaw:
"There were some things that were said that I won't really get into," Shaw said. "It was kind of bashing Phil Jackson, that I just refused to just sit and listen to. And that's when I said, 'Hey, I love Phil Jackson. I appreciate everything that we've all been able to accomplish under him. We've all prospered since he's been the coach here.'"
Obviously as you might expect, Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak pretty much denied the story being that way. Kupchack: "The fact of the matter, in our organization, there are three of us that made the decision. We interviewed several candidates, and Mike's interview was just excellent and we made a choice and decision as a group to pursue Mike Brown. For me to say anything else would not be true."Kupchak's naturally going to toe the company line, but Shaw made it clear that it wasn't the Laker GM that held things up. It was the new Buss in control.
"The negativity toward Phil didn't come from Mitch," Shaw said. "It was more from Jimmy Buss just doubting some of the decisions he made in terms of how he was handling and running the team and coaching the team on the sidelines, and sitting down instead of getting up. People look at coaches and want them to pace up and down the sidelines and bark instructions to the guys. That's not Phil's demeanor. That was viewed as a negative in my estimation -- but it won him five championships with the Lakers and six with the Bulls, and that was his coaching style when he won, so why was that not acceptable now?"Brian Shaw is definitely head coach material. The Lakers made what appears to be a good hire in Mike Brown. Things work out different ways for different reasons. No matter what, since Shaw didn't get the job he wanted and felt he deserved, he's going to feel there has to be deeper reasons. That's natural for anyone.
Who knows why or how Brown was picked. Was it really because of Phil Jackson? Seems like a really odd reason given Jackson's resume, but there had to be something. The Lakers will hide behind the curtain of "a new direction" and really, that's all they have to say. Because it's probably true.
Posted on: July 17, 2011 6:50 pm
Edited on: July 18, 2011 6:46 am
Former Los Angeles Lakers assistant coach Brian Shaw is upset by the treatment he received from his former team. Posted by Ben Golliver.
Turns out Los Angeles Lakers All-Star guard Kobe Bryant wasn't the only one who was a little bit worked up over his team's coaching search, which eventually ended with Mike Brown taking the reins from a retiring Phil Jackson. Back in May, you might remember, Bryant expressed surprise that Brown had been named head coach and Lakers VP Jim Buss ended up admitting that Bryant should have been more included in the process.
This past weekend, former Lakers assistant coach Brian Shaw also took exception to how the process went down. Shaw, a candidate for the head coaching job and the preferred choice of Bryant and other Lakers veterans, said in a radio interview transcribed by ESPNLA.com that he discovered that Brown had beaten him out by watching television rather than hearing directly from the Lakers.
"I wasn't really told anything," said Shaw, who had the public backing of players Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher, among others, to take over for Jackson. "Unfortunately, I found about not getting the job and who was hired for the job on ESPN. I didn't really talk to anyone for about three weeks after that."Shaw has every right to expect the utmost respect from the Lakers. Not only was he popular among the players, he had served the organization for more than a decade and been a part of five title-winning teams. In the interview, Shaw expressed frustration not only with how he found out that he hadn't landed the job, but also the tone of the search and the lack of communication between himself and upper management.
"At that point, all the speculation and what I've heard, the powers making those decisions felt like the team needed a change of culture and a new voice, and head in a new direction," Shaw said. "I thought that was kind of peculiar because in the 12 years I'd been there, all we had done was gone to the championship seven times and won five championships. I felt like there were 29 other teams in the league that would love to have that kind of culture and that kind of direction. ... But I didn't expect anything to be handed to me."Shaw then added that there "wasn't really much of a relationship" between himself and Jim Buss, who was prominently involved in the coaching search.
It's no surprise that Shaw is feeling some sour grapes. While he might not have thought the job would be handed to him, he certainly had to feel like he was the favorite with every possible homecourt advantage. To lose the job of your dreams and the fruits of your labors is a devastating blow; to get blindsided in the process obviously only made that worse.
As we've noted before, the NBA coaching ranks is one of the most discreet professions in any industry anywhere. Job security is so low and the carousel moves so quickly that you will rarely hear coaches speak up about anything other than a show of support for their head coach or some minute X-and-Os discussion before, during or after a game. Otherwise, mum's the word. For Shaw to be this open, direct and honest in his appraisal of Buss shows that he truly feels he was wronged.
That's something to worry about, again, for Lakers fans. Good management is not messing up and then apologizing after the fact. Or messing up and hoping no one says anything publicly. Good management is anticipating problems so you have time to prevent them, conducting things by the book, and treating those in the industry by the industry's standards. Clearly, Jim Buss never made things right with Shaw or Shaw would not be airing these grievances publicly.
The stakes here aren't enormous. We're just talking about a former assistant coach. The coaching search is complete and a solid candidate was named. But conduct during free agency pursuits, trade talks, contract negotiations and the like is of paramount importance. If Jim Buss left Bryant surprised and Shaw peeved during a coaching search, you can't help but wonder who will be next to point the finger at him.
The silver lining: Shaw landed on his feet with an associate head coaching position with the Indiana Pacers.
Posted on: July 5, 2011 4:17 pm
Edited on: July 5, 2011 4:41 pm
Posted by Royce Young
It only took about three months too long, but the Indiana Pacers will introduce Frank Vogel as their next coach at a press conference Wednesday.
Reportedly, Vogel signed for three years with the team, with the third being a team option.
Interim coach after Jim O'Brien was fired earlier in the season, Vogel helped the Pacers finish strong. They went 20-18 with Vogel in charge and pushed the top-seeded Bulls in the opening round of the playoffs, eventually bowing out in five games.
What was the hold-up, though, in naming him the head man?
Management -- read, Larry Bird -- was concerned with Vogel's ability to oversee a locker room and maintain the respect of his players. According to a report, things like punctuality and discipline slipped after Vogel took over. As a result, he targeted strong-minded assistants, one being Brian Shaw formerly of the Lakers.
Vogel, if you'll recall, is now officially the league's youngest coach at 37.
He seems to be a natural fit for the Pacers, and the team obviously plays hard for him. It's a wise move for the Pacers to retain Vogel. There are other good alternatives, but clearly the team is willing to play for him, and continuity is always a good thing, if it's an option.
When he took over the job in February, Vogel said, "We're changing the identity of our basketball team dramatically. We are a power-post team, blood and guts, old school, smash-mouth team that plays with size, strength, speed, athleticism. We attack the basket."
The Pacers did exactly that, playing a bit more uptempo while also integrating Roy Hibbert in the post. It was an effective strategy and was a big part of the team finishing well.
The Pacers were also interested in Mike Brown and Dwane Casey, but both of those found jobs with other teams. Who knows if they turned down the Pacers or vice versa. What we do know is that Vogel is officially in charge of the team he seemed to connect well with last season.
It's a little funny to me too that Vogel got this job. Back in January when the Pacers were considering canning O'Brien, they hesitated because they didn't feel a good interim replacement was on the current staff. They went ahead with firing O'Brien and then promoted Vogel, a young and raw assistant. He did well, got the team to buy into a system, play hard and make a playoff push.
And now he's the team's full-time coach. Sometimes, the best option is right under your nose.
Posted on: June 23, 2011 5:49 pm
Edited on: June 23, 2011 6:06 pm
Posted by Royce Young
Brian Shaw was supposed to be first in line to succeed Phil Jackson as head coach of the Lakers. That didn't happen, as Mike Brown was handed the job. The question then was, what's to become of Shaw, who is considered a rising coaching star?
According to the Indianapolis Star, he's set to become the Pacers "associate head coach."
Of course that's just a fancy name for an assistant, but what's so interesting here is that the Pacers still don't officially have a head coach yet. Frank Vogel is expected to get the position eventually, but that's contingent on Vogel putting together a good assistant staff. At least that's what Larry Bird has said recently.
Shaw isn't the most experienced guy in the world, but he's highly respected. One of the supposed issues with hiring Vogel was keeping control of the team as a disciplinarian and Bird wanted Vogel to have a couple assistants that think that way. I don't know if Shaw is exactly that, but he definitely makes the staff stronger.
Shaw will be a head coach at some point. It's obviously his goal. Who knows, maybe that job will come in Indiana if he replaces Vogel. The team hasn't settled on anything quite yet, but I'm sure it'll likely be Vogel. But if things don't go well, the job could easily becomes Shaw's in a hurry.
Posted on: June 6, 2011 9:07 pm
Edited on: June 6, 2011 9:38 pm
The Golden State Warriors have announced the hiring of Mark Jackson as their next head coach. Posted by Ben Golliver.
In a press release issued on Monday, the Golden State Warriors announced the hiring of television analyst and former point guard Mark Jackson as their next head coach.
“After an extensive search and a great deal of consideration, we have come to the conclusion that Mark Jackson is the best coach for this team,” Warriors general manager Larry Riley said. “He will bring a youthful and fresh approach to our team, and the fact that he enjoyed a stellar playing career, where he served most of that time as the leader of some very successful teams, will prove invaluable in the long run. We were looking for a coach with leadership ability and a strong personality and believe Mark possesses those qualities. He’s very well respected in NBA circles, is a consummate professional and his knowledge and background will be an incredible asset for our team and organization.”Jackson, a first-time head coach at 46 years of age, will assume his new duties as soon as the NBA Finals conclude. Yahoo! Sports reports the following contract details: "three years guaranteed, with team option for the fourth. He'll make $6 million-plus [total], league sources say." Jackson takes over for former coach Keith Smart, who was not retained following the 2010-2011 NBA season.
As noted last week, new Warriors owners Joe Lacob and Peter Gruber seemed intent on putting their own stamp on the franchise, and Jackson is certainly a big-name and fairly splashy hire. He should instantly command the respect of his players given his high profile, connections around the league and general basketball intelligence.
The Warriors were said to be seeking a more defensive-oriented approach, and Jackson played for two physical, intimidating teams in the Indiana Pacers and New York Knicks of the 1990s. As with any first-time head coach, it remains to be seen whether Jackson's leadership and toughness on the court transfer to the bench.
Jackson was floated as a finalist for the position last week. Other names the Warriors reportedly considered included Dallas Mavericks assistant coach Dwane Casey, Boston Celtics assistant coach Lawrence Frank and Los Angeles Lakers assistant coach Brian Shaw.
Posted on: May 26, 2011 2:20 pm
Posted by Royce Young
Mike Brown is officially the Lakers new coach. Now what?
Other than trying to make best buds with Kobe, Brown's got to start filling out his staff. Whether or not Brown will want to retain current assistants Jim Cleamons, Brian Shaw, Chuck Person and Frank Hamblen is to be seen. Reportedly, Brown has a good relationship with Person from their time together in Indiana and he could remain.
According to HoopsWorld, Brown may also attempt to bring in well-respected Italian coach Ettore Messina in as an assistant. Messina has long been considered one of Europe's top coaches and reportedly would like to get into the NBA.Another report from Yahoo! Sports has Brown making a run at high profile assistant Tim Grgurich of the Mavericks. Brown and Grgurich are "close friends." Of course I'd imagine no movement would be made on that front until the Mavericks are finished with their season.
The Lakers though are cutting costs in some places, recently even letting go their long-time assistant general manager Ronnie Lester as his contract won't be renewed. Equipment managers, trainers and everyone else is up in the air too, so Brown won't be able to make any firm decisions until the Lakers coaching budget is sorted out.
Posted on: May 21, 2011 3:14 am
Report: Lakers reach out to former Blazers/Kings/Rockets coach Rick Adelman regarding head coaching position.
Posted by Matt Moore
The Lakers aren't just giving former Blazers/Kings/Rockets coach Rick Adelman the courtesy of being on the shortlist. They're serious about pursuing him further as they inch towards a new head coach with Phil Jackson's vacant and extremely tall seat still warm. The Los Angeles Times reports that the Lakers have reached out to make conatact with Adelman about the position after a short list was determined Tuesday. From the Times:
The Lakers are slowly reaching out to coaching candidates, contacting Rick Adelman to officially express an interest in him to replace Phil Jackson.via Lakers, seeking a new coach, make contact with Rick Adelman - latimes.com.
Adelman is such a perfect fit for the Lakers, it's painful. An experienced and well-liked coach who prefers veterans, Adelman's never had a roster as stacked as the one still primed to compete in L.A.. The Lakers want a steady hand with the requisite amount of influence, fame, and experience to take the reins from the retiring Jackson, and Adelman needs a legitimate shot at a title. There's never going to be a better cross-section of interests for the two than this.
Still, it remains to be seeen if Adelman has interest in the position or if he'll agree to an interview with the Lakers. The Times reports the Lakers fully intend to take their time with the selection, with former Cavs coach Mike Brown and current assistant coach Brian Shaw still on the list. The Tiimes does confirm that any coach currently under contract (and thereby requiring the Lakers to provide compensation to their current teams) is not under consideration for the position.
You'd have to think Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol will be consulted on the hiring, as will the other Lakers executives. But if an interview is confirmed with Adelman, it'll be surprising if the NBA's Oden doesn't wind up the favorite for the position. Yes, I just made that nickname up.