Suns Notes: Majerle, Turner, O’Neal, Hunter

It seems as if there has been some unease in the Suns' coaching ranks since Alvin Gentry and the club parted ways last week, with three assistant coaches having been worthy candidates for the interim job. Here's the latest on that situation, along with other notes out of Phoenix:

  • Although assistant coach Dan Majerle has left the Suns, GM Lance Blanks doesn't think that relationship is in disrepair, telling Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic that he had "positive" discussions with Majerle. "Dan told [Lindsey Hunter] and me that he wanted to move on," Blanks said. "Change is hard for people, and I understand that."
  • According to Ric Bucher of 95.7 The Game (via Sulia), Majerle, rather than Hunter, likely would have been the players' choice for interim coach had they been given a vote. Elston Turner, who also hoped to land the interim job, has been counseled to remain on the team's staff in hopes that "being a good soldier in this situation" will result in a chance at a head coaching job in the future.
  • While Blanks and Jermaine O'Neal both downplayed reports of an altercation between the two, Bucher says (via Sulia) O'Neal is upset that the Suns plan to diminish his role. Bucher wonders if the Suns may eventually trade or release O'Neal, speculating that the Celtics, Heat, and Sixers would have interest.
  • Hunter appeared on KTAR in Phoenix, admitting that he was surprised to be named the team's interim head coach. Chris Fedor of Sports Radio Interviews has the quotes.
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