Right now Tom Thibodeau may be the prettiest girl in the bar, and the Hornets are stepping up to make their move.
New Orleans has entered negotiations with Thibodeau to become their new head coach, according to Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski. This means that Hornets General Manager Jeff Bower has exchanged offers with CAA, the firm that represents Thibodeau.
Meanwhile, Thibodeau himself continues to work as an assistant for the Boston Celtics, trying to put together a defense to slow the Lakers in the NBA Finals.
Thibodeau will be a head coach somewhere next year, that much we know. While the Hornets are making offers there are upcoming interviews he is expected to have with New Jersey and Chicago. He is a hot candidate. Certainly CAA will want to do what agents do, which is keep all the options open as long a possible and try to leverage that into the best deal for Thibodeau.
The Hornets, however, may not wait around. Wojnarowski reports that Trail Blazers assistant Monty Williams is second on their list and if negotiations with Thibodeau fail to progress they will not wait around to be used as leverage.
The Hornets have some nice pieces — Chris Paul, David West — and this was a team considered an up-and-comer a couple years ago. They can be good again quickly with the right coach (and some luck staying healthy).
The Chicago Bulls are one of the teams getting a D-League affiliate franchise this season. The Windy City Bulls will play in the suburb of Hoffman Estates, and now they have a head coach: North Carolina State assistant Bobby Lutz.
Via Upside & Motor‘s Chris Reichert:
Lutz was previously linked to the Bulls’ D-League job in July but there was confusion as to whether he would actually get the job. Now, it appears he has. And he has familiarity with the coaching staff, having served as an assistant coach at Iowa State under Fred Hoiberg in 2010-11, prior to going to NC State.
The release of NBA 2K17, the latest edition of the popular 2K video-game series, is less than a month away. Players are starting to get their likenesses in the game, as well as their player ratings, and tweet them out. Magic forward Evan Fournier wasn’t too happy with the way his came out.
Fournier’s countryman Rudy Gobert got in on the fun, too, changing his Twitter avatar to Fournier’s screenshot and encouraging others to do the same. He even created a hashtag for it.
At least they’re having fun with it.
On Friday, the Jazz traded German center Tibor Pleiss to the Sixers along with two second-round picks for Kendall Marshall. The big draw of the trade for Philly was the picks, and Pleiss is not expected to stay with the Sixers, according to Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia’s Jessica Camerato.
Pleiss had a forgettable season with Utah, and the Sixers have a glut of bigs including Nerlens Noel, Jahlil Okafor, Joel Embiid and Dario Saric. It would have been virtually impossible for Pleiss to crack the rotation, and it’s unlikely another team picks up his contract, which has $3 million guaranteed this season.
As a Jordan Brand athlete, Russell Westbrook is under the same Nike umbrella as former teammate Kevin Durant. But his latest Jordan spot, released Friday, has a very pointed tagline: “Some run, some make runways.”
Given the circumstances, it’s hard to interpret that as anything other than a reference to Durant signing with the Warriors and Westbrook signing an extension with the Thunder.