Spurs assistant coach Will Hardy, Bucks assistant Charles Lee, and Oklahoma City assistant Mark Daigneault are among the candidates who have received strong consideration for the Thunder‘s open head coaching position, according to Marc Stein of The New York Times.
The only one of nine teams making a head coaching change this year that has yet to finalize a new hire, the Thunder are conducting a lengthy, deliberate search for Billy Donovan‘s replacement. While one of the candidates mentioned above could ultimately land the job, Stein admits that he wouldn’t be shocked if Oklahoma City GM Sam Presti hires someone who has yet to be connected to the vacancy. That would be the “Prestian move,” Stein writes.
With the draft just two weeks away and training camps expected to open next month, it likely won’t be long before we get some clarity on OKC’s search.
Here are a few more items of interest from Stein’s latest newsletter for The New York Times:
- Industry sources estimate that Daryl Morey‘s salary on his new five-year contract with the Sixers is worth over $10MM per year, according to Stein, who adds that some people insist Morey’s new annual salary may even exceed $12MM. Morey had been planning to take a year off after leaving the Rockets this fall, but such an aggressive offer from Philadelphia would certainly have been a factor in his decision to change course.
- Another new head of basketball operations in the Atlantic, Knicks president Leon Rose, is said to have received an annual salary in the $8MM range, writes Stein.
- Stein’s newsletter also included a couple Rockets-related notes, which we passed along in an earlier roundup.