I don’t know if they were waiting for after Memorial Day, but Cleveland is starting to move more quickly in its interview process for a new coach.
It starts Tuesday with Bulls assistant coach Adrian Griffin, considered a frontrunner from the start, and it will move through the most likely candidates pretty quickly, reports Mary Schmitt Boyer of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Los Angeles Clippers assistant Tyronn Lue will interview later this week, followed by former Memphis coach Lionel Hollins. The Cavs also asked permission to speak to Clippers associate head coach Alvin Gentry, but it’s unclear if an interview with him has been scheduled.
There are other names mentioned — Vinny Del Negro and maybe Heat assistant David Fizdale, although he’s a tad busy with his other job right now — but expect the head coach to come out of that group of four.
Griffin was one of the first names to come up for the Cavs because he has ties with GM David Griffin going back to Phoenix. However he is no lock for this position (he is interviewing for the Jazz job as well). Both Gentry and Hollins feel like guys going to land a job this summer as they are interviewing almost everywhere there is a vacancy, including both with the Los Angeles Lakers this week.
I will make no predictions on what direction owner Dan Gilbert will eventually go to replace Mike Brown because I find predicting Gilbert impossible.
With the Timberwolves trailing the Pistons by three and 6.2 seconds left, Jimmy Butler drew a foul on a 3-pointer.
Butler made the first two free throws then, just before he got the ball for the third, Reggie Jackson interrupted to talk to Stanley Johnson, who was in rebounding position. Butler missed the free throw, and Detroit won 100-97 after an intentional foul.
Butler said Jackson didn’t affect him, but Butler’s side eye during the delay at least appeared to speak loudly.
Kris Dunn had a nice weekend – 39 points, 13 assists and 11 rebounds as the Bulls beat the Hornets and lost to the Suns – punctuated by this dunk in Chicago’s 113-105 loss to the Suns last night.
T.J. Warren paid the price for Tyler Ulis overplaying a Robin Lopez screen Dunn cleverly never used.
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The Orlando Magic has decided to end their annual summer league.
Magic president of basketball operations Jeff Weltman said Sunday the trend of NBA teams playing in the Las Vegas Summer League led to the decision end Orlando Pro Summer League. Orlando’s Summer League, which showcased rookies and young players, began in 2002.
Las Vegas will host all 30 teams for the summer league beginning in the summer of 2018. The Orlando Pro Summer League began as a 10-team tournament but there were just eight participating teams this past summer.
The summer league in Orlando, which is played in the Magic’s practice gym, was the only one of three summer leagues that did not allow fans to come in to watch.
Not that the Warriors needed him with Stephen Curry going off again, but Golden State was without Kevin Durant on Sunday in Brooklyn due to a sprained ankle.
Durant is officially day-to-day, but that brings up the question of whether he will be ready to go Wednesday night when the Warriors travel to Oklahoma City to take on his former team. Chris Haynes of ESPN asked Durant about it.
While some blowhards will talk about him dodging the Thunder, the Warriors course here is obvious — they do not want to rush him back for any game in November. Even one against Russell Westbrook. Ankles with stretched ligaments are easy to re-injure if not fully healed, and the Warriors don’t want this to be chronic and last through more of the season.
Durant is averaging 24.9 points per game, 7 rebounds, and 4.7 assists, and — with all due respect to fellow former MVP Curry — he is the best player on the Warriors. Maybe the best player in the world right now, period. Durant can score at will, and he had become a key part of the Warriors’ fifth-ranked defense blocking 2.2 shots per game (their offense is No. 1 in the league).