The Hornets‘ head coaching search is still in progress, but three league sources who spoke to Steve Bulpett of Heavy.com said they believe Mike D’Antoni is the frontrunner to land the job.
“I don’t think it’s a done deal or anything, but I know they like the idea of what he can do with LaMelo (Ball) and their running game,” a source told Bulpett. “If D’Antoni can get those guys on his wavelength, that’s going to be an even more fun team to watch.”
D’Antoni has coached a total of 1,199 regular season games for five different teams. If he were to be hired by the Hornets, he would be the second-oldest NBA head coach of all-time, behind only Gregg Popovich. D’Antoni turned 71 on Sunday.
Here’s more from Bulpett:
- According to Bulpett, chatter around the NBA indicates that the Hornets would like to get off Gordon Hayward‘s contract, which has two years and $61.6MM left on it. “I know Gordon’s situation has been super frustrating,” one executive said to Heavy.com. “He’s such an important player when he’s healthy. He’s talented and he plays the right way. But him staying healthy is a big if.”
- While Kyrie Irving faced plenty of criticism for his end-of-season comments about “managing the franchise” along with Kevin Durant, GM Sean Marks, and team owner Joe Tsai. However, a source close to the situation suggests Irving was merely stating a fact. “When Kyrie signed as a free agent, he basically said, ‘I’ll come and I’ll bring Kevin Durant,'” that source told Bulpett. “And in return, the Nets agreed that he could have a say in the roster decisions. … With Kyrie, they talked this out beforehand. He wanted a situation like LeBron (James) has — or like he thinks LeBron has.”
- Bulpett has heard that Kings owner Vivek Ranadive, who has had an outsized voice in some basketball decisions in the past, chose to listen to his basketball operations executives in the head coaching search, which led to Sacramento hiring Mike Brown. In addition to general manager Monte McNair, assistant GM Wes Wilcox was involved in that coaching decision, Bulpett notes.
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10 thoughts on “Bulpett’s Latest: D’Antoni, Hornets, Hayward, Kings, Irving”
D’Antoni sounds like a “more cowbell” move.
Can’t defend anybody? Get a coach who can’t teach defense! Hope to win a bunch of 150-149 games.
Absolutely agree. The reason Borrego was gone was because Charlotte couldn’t defend well. D’Antoni is arguably the worst defensive coach out there and no spring chicken at that. Plenty of worthy candidates out there that would be a better fit.
I agree that D’Antoni wouldn’t make sense considering the reasons that were given for Borregos departure, BUT the 17-18 Rockets were the 6th defense of that year and almost beat the best team ever. It will sound like a flaw year because the other two seasons they were like 16-20th. But still, he can make defense work given the right personel.
That being said, still agree that they shouldn’t hire him, the only reason i can think is that LaMelo will never be decent defensively so they can gamble and try to be a run and gun team that can outscore other teams. Get in the playoffs and MJ will be happy with being at best mediocre.
Gotta credit Jeff Bzdelik instead of D’Antoni for the Rockets defense
I like Bulprett’s thinking.
Said Ranadive favored Mark Jackson but let McNair decide.
Heavy.com is the kind of source that might see things from Irving’s side. They said in essence that Marks is in as much trouble with Irving, as vice versa.
Another article said Hulu has an upcoming comedy with a Nets background, to feature a Joe Tsai character for an AAPI market.
I liked the HBO series on the Lakers 1980/81… That was intended to be factual tho. Enough went on then that stories did not have to be added, though there were exaggerations included.
It makes perfect sense for a team that already scored the 4th most and allowed the 6th most points this past season to hire Mike D’Antoni. I see no problems
So the ‘flat earth’ guy has a say in management of the team? That seems like a smart idea…
Poor mike brown nobody deserves to be the head coach of the kings
MDA would be a huge upgrade on Borrego as a HC for CHA… at least he would let LaMelo ripped it properly, Borrego had no idea how to make the best of his best player, he was a horrible coach!
Charlotte has had unfortunate injuries at tough times these last 2 seasons. I personally wouldnt trade PJ Washington or Gordon Heyward. I also thought Borrego dod a good job, but of the candidates we’ve seen so far, I think Atkinson is the choice.