The Warriors are coalescing behind Stan Van Gundy as their primary coaching target as their chances of landing Steve Kerr become increasingly remote. A formal interview between Golden State and Van Gundy is “imminent,” as Marc Stein of ESPN.com tweets, while it seems as though Kerr is choosing between coaching the Knicks and remaining in broadcasting, according to Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com. There remains a slight chance Kerr could end up with Golden State, Marc Berman of the New York Post writes, but the Warriors are moving forward with other candidates.
The Warriors haven’t had serious discussions with Kerr in days, and co-owner Joe Lacob is coming over to the side of his front office staff, who believe Van Gundy is the best option to coach the team, tweets Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. A report on Thursday indicated that some of the Warriors players were Van Gundy’s most significant proponents, with the front office sold on Kerr. That suggests the team’s brass is especially sensitive to the players’ wishes following the ouster of Mark Jackson, who was popular among those in uniform, but that’s just my speculation.
Kerr and his representatives are hoping for a resolution with the Knicks soon, Berman writes, a reversal of the dynamic from last week, when it appeared as though Knicks president Phil Jackson was becoming impatient as he waited for an answer from his would-be coach. The Knicks are wary of overpaying Kerr, and they’re reluctant to give him a long-term deal, preferring a contract that accords him more like the coaching neophyte that he is an less like a sought-after commodity, Wojnarowski reports (on Twitter).
Kerr and the Knicks discussed a five-year, $25MM deal earlier this month, Begley hears, suggesting that those terms probably escalated when Golden State became involved. Kerr has reportedly been seeking a five-year deal with money similar to the four-year, $24MM contract that the Knicks gave former coach Mike D’Antoni in 2008. Salaries between $5MM and $6MM on a contract that lasts four or five years would make him one of the league’s most well-compensated coaches, seemingly counter to the Knicks’ desire.