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Coaching Rumors: Knicks, Calipari, Ollie

The Knicks reached out in January through a third party to canvass John Calipari‘s interest in coaching the team next season, a source tells Ian Begley of The Kentucky coach was intrigued with the idea of working with fellow Creative Artists Agency client Carmelo Anthony, Begley adds, but the talks never proceeded from there. It’s “highly unlikely” a well-known coach like Calipari would take the job since, with Phil Jackson around, the team’s next coach won’t have any control over player personnel, Begley writes. There’s more insight on Calipari and another college coach perhaps more likely to come to the NBA, and we’ll round it up here:

  • Most NBA front office types see Calipari as a fine college coach, but they have their doubts about whether he’d perform well in the NBA, tweets Chris Mannix of Calipari went 72-112 in parts of three seasons with the Nets in the late 1990s.
  • Multiple NBA executives tell Jeff Goodman of, who writes in an Insider-only piece, that they expect Connecticut’s Kevin Ollie to become an NBA head coaching candidate. One exec suggests that the coach’s ties to former teammate Kevin Durant could prompt an NBA team to make a lucrative offer to bring Ollie to the pro sidelines.
  • Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni downplayed the notion that he and Marshall University, his alma mater, have mutual interest in him coaching the school’s team next season, as he tells Sam Amick of USA Today“I love Marshall, and I’ve been so close to them for a long time – especially with the new [athletic director] and the new president, and people there,” D’Antoni said. “It’s a great thing. But my heart is here, and my head is here [with the Lakers]. This is what I know, so I don’t want to get distracted with that. I never have been. It always comes up when they’re looking, but they’re looking and I’m fine.”
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