A source that spoke to Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald expects Doc Rivers to return to the Celtics, if for no other reason than the fact that no other team will offer him the $7MM annual salary he's earning in Boston. However, if Rivers does decide to part ways with the team, Vinny Del Negro would receive serious consideration as his replacement, multiple sources tell Murphy.
"As a stopgap for that situation, sure," one source said. "Vinny would be the perfect person for what they need. All of the All-Star coaches, or whatever you want to call them, are going, and knowing how Danny [Ainge] feels about him, [Del Negro] would be a good fit."
Here's more from around the Atlantic Division on a Friday morning:
- Appearing on WFAN this morning, Nets GM Billy King said he expects C.J. Watson to opt out of the final year of his contract to become a free agent (link via Josh Newman of SNY.tv).
- Jason Kidd confirmed on ESPN Radio this morning that he has extended an offer to former Nets head coach Lawrence Frank to join his staff in Brooklyn (link via Mike Mazzeo of ESPNNewYork.com). "The invitation is out there, so it's up to him," Kidd said.
- Even after hiring Kidd, the Nets are still a move or two away from becoming a legit contender, says Filip Bondy of the New York Daily News.
- Pacers president Donnie Walsh tells Fred Kerber and Mark Hale of the New York Post that he was "disappointed" the Nets didn't decide to hire Indiana assistant Brian Shaw.
- Yesterday, Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press named the Knicks as a team with interest in Will Bynum, and today he adds another Atlantic team to Bynum's potential list of suitors: The Sixers (Twitter link). The Pacers and Lakers may also be interested, according to Ellis.