Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reported yesterday that the Grizzlies had given head coach Lionel Hollins permission to speak to other suitors, after talks between Hollins and the team reached an impasse. With Hollins seemingly unlikely to return to Memphis, plenty of this morning's links relate to the futures of the coach and the club. Here are a few of them:
- Hollins' representatives called the Clippers today to inquire on their coaching vacancy, two NBA execs told Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times. Hollins and his agent are waiting for the Clippers’ front office to hear back from owner Donald Sterling before any decisions could be made, one executive said. Meanwhile, the Clippers' reported interest in Nuggets Coach George Karl appears to be going nowhere, another NBA executive says.
- Appearing on AM 560 Sports 56 WHBQ in Memphis, Hollins told Peter Edmiston (Twitter link) that he's not really interested in speaking to other teams, and would prefer to work out a fair deal to return to the Grizzlies, unlikely as that seems. The full conversation with Hollins, which featured a number of other interesting comments, can be found under "Featured Audio" on the right-hand sidebar here.
- Among the other comments made by Hollins, according to Ken Berger of CBSSports.com, was this one, in reference to Grizzlies assistant Dave Joerger: "Why would you move a proven coach, who has shown what he can do, to bring in an 'upcoming superstar?' To me, that's ludicrous. … It's puzzling when I hear comments like that."
- Chris Herrington of the Memphis Flyer takes an extended look at the Hollins situation, concluding that it appears a divorce between the Grizzlies and their head coach is likely. Herrington also thinks there's a scenario possible in which Hollins isn't an NBA coach next season.
- The reason Hollins' time in Memphis appears over is because of a difference in philosophy between Hollins and management, rather than the coach's increasing price tag, writes Steve Kyler of HoopsWorld.
- The way Hollins needled the front office throughout the year made it virtually impossible for the Grizzlies to bring him back, according to Tom Ziller of SBNation.com, who thinks team management will be unfairly blamed if the team doesn't return to the Western Finals next year without Hollins.