Larry Drew Rumors
May 17 at 3:32pm CST By Luke Adams
Although Larry Drew remains under contract as the Hawks' head coach until June 30th, Atlanta is considering alternatives, interviewing several other candidates for the position. As the Hawks explore their options though, it appears Drew is doing the same. Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports (via Twitter) that Drew will interview on Monday for the Bucks' head coaching opening.
We heard last night that Jerry Sloan doesn't have interest in the Bucks' job, but the team doesn't have any shortage of potential candidates. Milwaukee has already conducted interviews with Kelvin Sampson, Nate McMillan, J.B. Bickerstaff, and Steve Clifford as well.
The Bucks have reportedly been seeking a coach who will command respect in the team's locker room, following a playoff incident between Larry Sanders and Monta Ellis and a season that saw multiple players dissatisfied with their roles.
May 11 at 1:34pm CST By Zach Links
Here's a look at the latest coaching notes from around the Association..
- Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press adds Thunder assistant coach Maurice Cheeks to the list of candidates drawing interest from the Pistons (Twitter link).
- Snyder might not be a candidate in Atlanta, but the Bobcats are expected to interview him, just as they did during their coaching search last year, tweets Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports.
- Word that the Hawks are going hard after Stan Van Gundy has been overstated, according to Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta-Journal Constitution (via Twitter), though they will talk to him. Incumbent Larry Drew remains a candidate for the position but Quin Snyder is not currently in the mix (Twitter links).
- The Pistons will interview Knicks assistant coach Darrell Walker, according to Marc Stein of ESPN.com. That brings Detroit's list to five candidates as they have already interviewed Nate McMillan, Suns interim coach Lindsey Hunter, Spurs assistant Mike Budenholzer, and Rockets assistant J.B. Bickerstaff.
May 10 at 7:22pm CST By Chuck Myron
The Hawks have reached out to Stan Van Gundy, and GM Danny Ferry views him as his top choice to coach the team next season, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. The team has let incumbent coach Larry Drew know that it will look at other candidates, though there is a possibility the Hawks circle back to Drew if they strike out with their other targets. Van Gundy was reportedly in Milwaukee today to interview with the Bucks, but the former University of Wisconsin coach has declined interest in that job, according to Wojnarowski.
Van Gundy and the Hawks have had contact, but the coach hasn't met with anyone from the team, writes Wojnarowski, who hears that Van Gundy holds Ferry in high regard. Echoing a report earlier this week from Marc Stein of ESPN.com, Wojnarowski identifies Mike Budenholzer and Quin Snyder as other candidates for the job.
The push for Van Gundy could be part of Ferry's efforts to land Dwight Howard in free agency. Howard and Van Gundy famously clashed in Orlando, but Van Gundy has indicated the two have mended fences and remain in contact, so there's some belief, according to Wojnarowski, that Van Gundy's presence might enhance the team's chances of signing Howard.
May 7 at 6:33pm CST By Alex Lee
The latest from Fox Sports Ohio's Sam Amico is Hawks-centric and touches on many of the same topics as Marc Stein's column from earlier today. The most noteworthy overlap between the reports is that the idea of Dwight Howard leaving L.A. after one season is gaining momentum in NBA circles. Amico writes that the Hawks are considered the favorite should Howard leave the Lakers, and they plan to make a big push for the All-Star center. Here are other notes from Amico's story:
- The Hawks have eight expiring contracts - Josh Smith, Devin Harris, Zaza Pachulia, Kyle Korver, Johan Petro, Dahntay Jones, Anthony Tolliver and Shelvin Mack - and GM Danny Ferry believes that this is the summer that could "change the course of his franchise." The team also holds options on DeShawn Stevenson and Mike Scott that are no guarantee to be picked up.
- Citing league executives, Amico writes that Atlanta is convinced the uncertainty surrounding the Lakers' future and a chance to return to his hometown will force Howard to consider them as a realistic landing spot. The Rockets and Suns are also expected to offer Howard a deal, but Amico's sources suspect the Hawks are the Lakers' only real competition.
- The Hawks will have the financial flexibility to add Howard as well as another star to a roster that will already include Al Horford. Amico reports that the Hawks are also expected to actively explore trades as the draft approaches.
- Amico's sources expect Ferry to handpick a replacement for Larry Drew, and he confirms Stein's report that Quin Snyder could be a target. Snyder and Ferry played together at Duke in the '80s and also were roommates at one point. Amico also mentions Mike Budenholzer and Thunder assistant Maurice Cheeks as potential options.
May 6 at 5:46pm CST By Zach Links
Here's the latest news on coaching and GM vacancies courtesy of CBSSports.com's Ken Berger..
- It's too early to identify a front-runner in the Sixers search, but things sound promising for Warriors assistant Mike Malone. Philly execs have contacted the Warriors multiple times about Malone, including several conversations with consultant Jerry West. In fact, the Sixers are consulting players who've played under both Malone and Spurs assistant Mike Budenholzer to get a feel for how the two candidates differ, according to one source.
- To the surprise of some rival executives, the Sixers' coaching search is being led by GM Tony DiLeo, whose contract expires this summer. With team president Rod Thorn moving into a smaller role and DiLeo's contract expiring, rival execs expect the Sixers seek out a new decision maker as well. In fact, that process has already begun through back-channel conversations, one person contacted on the Sixers' behalf told Berger.
- Nets star Deron Williams has been vocal in his support of Jerry Sloan for the job but also has a strong relationship with Jeff Hornacek. In addition to the Sixers, the former Jazz sharpshooter has attracted interest from the Bobcats, Suns, and Bucks, sources told Berger.
- The Suns are in the advanced stages of their GM search and the latest word is that Celtics assistant GM Ryan McDonough's is gaining momentum. Bucks assistant GM Jeff Weltman has been viewed as the favorite in some circles, however, and the Suns also have interviewed Spurs exec (and former Knicks GM) Scott Layden.
- The Clippers are expected to can Vinny Del Negro and Hawks are expected to let Larry Drew go, league sources said. The Clippers are said to be "exploring all options," while the Hawks' decision on Drew's future is expected "sooner than later," sources said. It is widely believed that GM Danny Ferry prefers to install his own head coach in Atlanta.
May 6 at 2:07pm CST By Ryan Raroque
MONDAY, 2:07pm: As Ferry weighs the next move for the Hawks, Drew and his coaching staff in Atlanta have begun exploring other employment opportunities, according to Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports. Spears hears from one source close to the staff who believes there's a "slim chance" Drew and his coaches will be retained.
SATURDAY, 7:50pm: Earlier this afternoon, we briefly heard that the Hawks planned to hold off on decisions regarding personnel (including the head coach) for a few days. According to an ESPN report (via the Associated Press), Hawks GM Danny Ferry went on record saying that he isn't ready to make a decision on whether he'll retain Larry Drew beyond this season:
"We're going to take some time, give it some distance, give it some space from the season, from the playoffs, from the emotions of that...Then we'll make decisions that we feel are best in the short-term and long-term interests of the team."
Drew - recently rumored to be interested in the 76ers' head coaching vacancy - has compiled a 128-102 record in three seasons as Atlanta's head coach. After the Hawks were dealt their second consecutive first-round playoff exit this year, Drew gave credit to his team's overall performance this season considering that many on the team's roster are headed for free agency. He also said that he's not sure about whether or not his future involves a continued tenure in Atlanta:
"I thought we had a really good season given what our circumstances were. They weren't the best...Whether I'm back here or not, I don't know. The one thing I will say is I've had a great run here."
Considering that the Hawks only have three players guaranteed to be under contract next season, I'd be surprised if Ferry didn't make a decision on the head coaching situation soon, especially before scouring free agency this summer and determining the players who would be a good fit.
May 4 at 4:38pm CST By Chuck Myron
Four teams have coaching vacancies, but that number could grow as more clubs are eliminated from the playoffs and start to make their offseason plans. That has put the names of a lot of coaches in the headlines, and we've got the latest here:
- Kelvin Sampson has been among the top candidates for the Bucks coaching vacancy ever since it was created, and Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal Times hears the Rockets assistant would be the team's No. 1 choice (Twitter link).
- One coach who apparently won't be in the mix for the Bucks is Jerry Sloan, according to Woelfel, in spite of his apparent willingness to return to the bench somewhere (Twitter link).
- The Hawks are waiting a few days before making any decisions, but coach Larry Drew wants to know soon whether he'll be retained, writes Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. If the Hawks let him go, he wants to coach for another team, and reportedly has interest in the Sixers.
- Kevin McHale's willingness to remain as Rockets coach is at about 90%, sources tell Marc Stein of ESPN.com. According to owner Leslie Alexander, McHale won't be going anywhere, as Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle notes via Twitter.
- Mark Kiszla of the Denver Post offers the bold opinion that George Karl should step down as coach of the Nuggets after yet another first-round exit. Many of his arguments ring true, but I disagree that the team's lack of a closer should be pinned on Karl's shoulders, as Kiszla suggests.
- With the coaching market in flux, Dakota Schmidt of Ridiculous Upside wonders whether Nick Nurse, who's led two different teams to D-League titles, could surface as a candidate.
April 28 at 8:44am CST By Chuck Myron
Larry Drew wants to become a candidate for the Sixers head coaching job if the Hawks let him go, a source tells John Mitchell of the Philadelphia Inquirer. Drew is in the final season of his contract with Atlanta, and he hasn't had any discussions with GM Danny Ferry about an extension, Mitchell hears.
Ferry said in November that he was "fully engaged with Larry and our partnership," but rumors persisted that the GM would replace Drew with close associate Mike Brown at season's end. Brown's hiring in Cleveland hasn't ended speculation that Ferry may change coaches, as Grantland's Zach Lowe this week linked the Hawks to Quin Snyder.
The Sixers appear to be taking it slow with their search for Doug Collins' replacement, and that could allow Drew, who's still coaching the Hawks in the playoffs, to enter the picture. For now, assistant coaches Michael Malone of the Warriors and Brian Shaw of the Pacers appear to be the top candidates for the job. Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe believes Aaron McKie, who served as an assistant on Collins' staff, may receive consideration as well. Mitchell hinted earlier this week that the team could replace GM Tony DiLeo as well.
January 21 at 2:03pm CST By Zach Links
NBA.com's David Aldridge has his new weekly column up, and as usual, it's packed full of interesting notes, quotes, and stories. Let's take a look at some highlights....
- The Hawks' Larry Drew was the NBA's Coach of the Month in December, but as we saw with Avery Johnson, that doesn't always guarantee job security. The Hawks have dropped eight of their last ten and there has been speculation around the league that GM Danny Ferry is waiting for the end of the season to remove Drew and hire Mike Brown. For his part, Ferry says that he has enjoyed working with Drew and plans to discuss his future with him after the season.
- Ferry acknowledged that he made decisions this summer with the idea of freeing up cap space down the line. It was a plan that he knew wouldn't yield a world-beating Hawks team in 2012/13. "I had no preconceived notions," Ferry said. "We were in a situation where we had six guys back and we were going to have to fill the roster with six guys to stay under the tax. Ownership gave me permission to go over the tax, but I didn't think there was anything we were going to be able to do to be a contender even over the tax."
- Prior to his suspension, Josh Smith told Aldridge that he had a great deal of confidence in the Hawks' core and believed that they could be a couple pieces away from contending.
- Nicolas Batum's says that his lucrative new deal hasn't put pressure on him and has instead left him feeling liberated. The forward is averaging 16.8 PPG with 5.9 RPG per game this season which are both career highs.
- There has been some buzz about a possible return to the Cavaliers for LeBron James in 2014, but Aldridge believes that Cleveland will still be more than two years from contending with a core including Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters.
December 14 at 1:50pm CST By Luke Adams
After rounding up a few Raptors updates earlier this afternoon, let's take a look around the rest of the Eastern Conference:
- One opposing GM points out to Ric Bucher of 95.7 The Game (Sulia link) that a successful season for the Hawks would make it difficult for new GM Danny Ferry to bring in his own head coach to replace Larry Drew next year, if that's what Ferry wants to do. League sources also question whether Josh Smith fits the profile of a player Ferry would want to retain long-term, according to Bucher.
- The Celtics inquired on Omer Asik over the summer, head coach Doc Rivers tells A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com (Twitter link). However, the team quickly moved on when it heard Asik's price tag.
- It's looking more and more like Andray Blatche might be this summer's "one [free agent] that got away" from the Heat, says Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel.
- Following up on comments he made last month, Mike D'Antoni clarified to reporters, including Fred Kerber of the New York Post, that he had no regrets about coaching the Knicks, but that he regretted leaving Steve Nash and the Suns.
- In a piece for the Detroit Free Press, Dan Feldman of PistonPowered wonders if Charlie Villanueva is playing well enough to avoid being amnestied next summer.