John Kuester

Odds & Ends: Bibby, Graham, Kuester

According to Jared Zwerling of Bleacher Report, Mike Bibby – who is reportedly well-liked by Spurs coach Gregg Popovich - was invited to San Antonio's training camp and had a good chance of making the team. However, the veteran guard now won't be able to attend because of a foot/heel injury (Twitter link). It's been a bit of a Jazz fest as far as news goes this evening, but here are some other noteworthy links we've gathered up from around the Association:

  • Bradford Doolittle of ranks the league's top ten frontcourts (Insiders only). 
  • Stephen Graham could possibly have an invitation to participate in Bucks camp this fall (Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal Times via Twitter). There hasn't been any further mention of an official invitation, but we'll look to relay any updates as they surface. 
  • 76ers rookie head coach Brett Brown doesn't feel inclined to bring along a former head coach as an assistant, notes Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer“I don’t feel with this team that it’s mandatory that I have to surround myself with perspective or wisdom or, you know, an Owl that’s been there, done that…I feel that this year’s team is about development. And I feel like it’s about … teaching, relationships and energy more than NBA wisdom."
  • Former Pistons head coach and Lakers assistant John Kuester, however, has been rumored to be a potential candidate for Brown's coaching staff in Philadelphia.
  • The Score's Mark Deeks discusses Paul George's max contract extension as well as a potential one for Kings center DeMarcus Cousins. While Deeks understands the logic behind securing George for the long term, he feels that offering the same type of deal to Cousins would be an enormous gamble. 

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Sixers Notes: White, Wyatt, Turner, Kuester

New 76ers head coach Brett Brown sat down with the media for a 35-minute press conference today.  Let's take a look at the reports coming out of Philly a day after they officially signed first round picks Nerlens Noel and Michael Carter-Williams:

  • Royce White, who the team acquired in July, is officially participating in pre-training camp workouts with the Sixers and is expected to be present for the team's Media Day on Friday, writes the Philadelphia Inquirer's Keith Pompey.  Based on Brown's comments, it sounds like the Sixers plan to try to bring him along slowly, and this news certainly qualifies as a step in the right direction considering his rocky stint with Houston.  
  • According to Pompey, Brown compared the scoring potential of Temple product Khalif Wyatt to that of Gary Neal, his former pupil in San Antonio.  Another thing Wyatt shares with Neal, according to Brown, is a body type for a guard that necessitates a concentration on fitness.  Pompey adds that Wyatt's conditioning was called into question in his time at Temple.
  • Tom Moore of writes that Brown's fixation on conditioning extends far beyond just Wyatt, adding that the new coach believes in the talent of Evan Turner, who is headed into the fourth and final year of his rookie contract. Brown will count on Turner as a team leader, writes Moore. 
  • Both Pompey and Moore report that Brown is still searching for another assistant coach. He has already hired Chad Iske, Lloyd Pierce, Greg Foster and Billy Lange.  Although Brown implied NBA experience is not an absolute necessity on a team this inexperienced, Moore lists former Sixers assistant and Pistons head coach John Kuester as a candidate due to a previous connection with Brown.  Last week there was a report that Kuester was the favorite to be hired as Brown's top assistant. 

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Odds & Ends: Grizzlies, Sixers, Wolves, Kennedy

Few NBA teams had less roster turnover this offseason than the Grizzlies. As our free agent tracker shows, the only player who signed with the team for more than the minimum was Tony Allen, who has played in Memphis since 2010 and emerged as one of the club's leaders. However, the team will be in for some changes on the bench, where former assistant Dave Joerger takes over the head coaching job from the departed Lionel Hollins. Joerger tells Lang Greene of HoopsWorld that while he'll stick to many of the things that made last year's team successful, he expects to add a few new wrinkles to the mix as well.

Here are a few more odds and ends from around the NBA:

  • Former Pistons head coach John Kuester is currently the top candidate to be hired as Brett Brown's lead assistant with the 76ers, tweets Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.
  • Jorge Sierra of HoopsHype spoke to Ricky Rubio, who identified the Timberwolves' new deals with Nikola Pekovic and Chase Budinger as the club's best signings of the summer.
  • Rebuilding is often a necessary process, but it has to give way to something substantial eventually, writes Mark Deeks of Deeks examines the free agent fates of Paul Millsap and Al Jefferson, noting that the Hawks were able to land Millsap for fewer years and dollars than the Bobcats signed Jefferson in part because Charlotte is paying a sort of "Bobcats tax" based on its reputation as a perennial lottery team.
  • In an Insider-only piece for, Larry Coon lists the Nets, Bobcats, and Rockets among the winners of the league's new CBA, while placing the Celtics, Bulls, and Thunder in the losers column.
  • Keith Schlosser of Ridiculous Upside takes a look at D.J. Kennedy's persistent quest to earn a spot on an NBA roster. Kennedy will be in camp with the Mavericks in October.

Atlantic Notes: Knicks, Celtics, Sullinger

Jared Zwerling of talked with two NBA scouts who said the Knicks might need an offensive-minded assistant to help head coach Mike Woodson. The Knicks small ball lineup with Carmelo Anthony at power forward, had them playing well in a run of wins to start and end the 2012/13 season. 

Unfortunately, those wins didn't come about with the Knicks' two ostensible superstars sharing the front court together. Amar'e Stoudemire was out with an injury to start the season, and in the month leading up to the playoffs when the Knicks won 10-straight to secure the 2nd playoff seed in the East.

But if the Knicks are going to take advantage of their two highest-paid players–Anthony and Stoudemire, who are set to make $23.742MM and $23.411MM next season–they'll have to find a way to share the ball on offense from their naturally overlapping high-block positions on the court.

A couple of the candidates offered by Zwerling include David Blatt and his Princeton offense, which has been successful with Maccabi Tel Aviv, and former Lakers assistant during the 2011/12 season and an assistant with Woodson on the title-winning 2004 Pistons team, John Kuester. Kuester's "early offense" approach as an offensive assistant with the Cavs from 2007-2009 helped another point forward led team, with LeBron James initiating a lot of that early offense.

Here are some more notes surrounding two of the three Atlantic division playoff teams:

  • Tony Mitchell, the power forward out of North Texas, thinks he’s the answer for the Knicks’ front court problems this past season, writes Ian Begley of He’s expected to be a mid-first round pick, and the Knicks have the 24th pick in this year's draft.
  • The Knicks also looked at Providence combo guard, Ricky Ledo, during a workout on Friday, which he told Zwerling was his best during the run-up to the draft. The Knicks might use him as a replacement for the recently retired Jason Kidd 
  • The Celtics have a lot of questions that need answering this offseason regarding franchise cornerstones, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, but they’ve also got to figure out what to do with their younger players as well, writes Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald.
  • One of those younger players on the Celtics’ roster was last season’s rookie from Ohio State University, Jared Sullinger. He wasn’t able to play for the Celtics in the playoffs because of a back injury before the season ended, but has tracked his recovery and Sullinger told his back is “completely fixed.”
  • A reader asked’s Chris Forsberg if the Spurs’ success in this year’s finals will persuade Danny Ainge the Celtics can compete for a title with the aging Pierce and Garnett. Forsberg says the Spurs’ fate in the Finals will have no impact on Ainge’s decision making process

Boyer On Cavs, Mike Brown, Oden

Mary Schmitt Boyer of The Plain Dealer answered a handful of questions from Cavaliers fans earlier, pointing out that the team will most likely build through the draft and trades. If they were to find someone in free agency, Boyer opines, the Cavs definitely don't want to overpay in order to land their target. She also doesn't see Dwight Howard being a real option, nor does she think Kevin Love or LaMarcus Aldridge will be available on the trade market.  You can find more of her noteworthy points below:

  • With four draft picks in June, Boyer thinks that the team will look to package some picks in order to move up or make a trade. 
  • Mike Brown appears to be putting his wish list of prospective assistant coaches together, and although former assistant John Kuester has been mentioned, it's not clear if he's interested. 
  • Though mutual interest remains between the Cavs and Greg Oden, the team won't be willing to give him an opportunity at just any price. 
  • The team is in full support of Anderson Varejao and wants to see him fully healthy and ready to play as soon as possible. 

Cavs Rumors: Trades, Speights, Livingston, Miles

The Cavaliers missed the playoffs and have already hired Mike Brown as their new coach. The draft lottery, in which they'll have a 15.6% chance at the top pick, is more than three weeks away. Still, the rumor mill is far from dry in Cleveland. Bob Finnan of The News-Herald rounds up the latest:

  • Finnan doesn't believe rumors that the Cavs are willing to part with young talent like Dion Waiters and Tristan Thompson in return for All-Stars LaMarcus Aldridge or Kevin Love, in part because Cleveland would have to give up too much to swing such a deal.
  • Finnan thinks Marreese Speights might not fit the Cavs culture, and the scribe believes the team is hoping Speights turns down his $4.515MM player option for next season.
  • A source tells Finnan that Shaun Livingston will likely ask for $3MM to $4MM this summer and settle for $2MM to $2.5MM.
  • It's no longer a given that the Cavs will bring back C.J. Miles next season. His $2.225MM contract for 2013/14 is fully non-guaranteed.
  • John Kuester has been expected to join new Brown's staff, but sources tell Finnan he might be reluctant to coach again in the NBA after negative experiences as head coach of the Pistons and as an assistant with the Lakers. 
  • Donyell Marshall, a player under Brown from 2005 to 2008, has likely inquired about a position on Brown's coaching staff, according to Finnan, who suggests Eric SnowJamahl Mosley, Nate Tibbetts and Alex Jensen as other possible assistant coaching candidates for the team.

Coaching Rumors: Hollins, Snyder, Jensen, Brown

As many as a third of the league's teams could be looking for coaches this summer, and that doesn't include the Cavaliers, who've already hired Mike Brown, Grantland's Zach Lowe writes. An agent told Lowe that the Brown/Cavs pairing could spur movement in the rest of the coaching market. Lowe has plenty more on coaches who could be coming or going, and takes a closer look at the Bobcats and Cavs in his latest column. We'll pass along the highlights here, along with news from other NBA scribes:

  • The Grizzlies are more likely than not to retain Lionel Hollins, though that could change if the Clippers sweep them in the first round.
  • Hawks GM Danny Ferry may turn to Quin Snyder if he decides to let go of Larry Drew, now that Brown, his preferred target, is no longer available.
  • Alex Jensen, this season's D-League Coach of the Year, could be on an NBA bench as soon as next season, and earns consistent mention among defensively minded coaches on the rise.
  • The final season of Brown's five-year deal with the Cavs is partially guaranteed, as Charley Rosen notes for HoopsHype. Brown can take the Cavs to "the outer fringes of respectability" at best, Rosen opines.
  • Alvin Gentry, who was let go by the Suns earlier this season, has the resume, the presence, and the local ties necessary to make him a candidate for the Bobcats' coaching opening, tweets's Marc Stein. 
  • Bobcats assistant coach Stephen Silas has shown a knack for player development and, despite his team's struggles, is considered a strong candidate for head coaching jobs, according to Chris Mannix of (Twitter link).
  • Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio has the latest on Brown's effort to build his staff with the Cavs, reporting that former Pistons head coach John Kuester is expected to join Brown in Cleveland.
  • Brown isn't short on coaching acumen, but his success with the Cavs will ultimately come down to whether the team can give him a roster that's talented enough to win, Pat McManamon of Fox Sports Ohio believes.