Dan Feldman

HOUSTON, TEXAS - APRIL 04:  Head coach Jay Wright of the Villanova Wildcats celebrates defeating the North Carolina Tar Heels 77-74 to win the 2016 NCAA Men's Final Four National Championship game at NRG Stadium on April 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Rumor: Suns interested in Villanova coach Jay Wright


The hot name in NBA coaching circles: Jay Wright, who just led Villanova to the national championship.

Mitch Lawrence of Sporting News:

I’m a little skeptical, considering the source.

None of these outcomes make Lawrence wrong. Maybe Marks leaned toward rejecting the job before accepting it. Maybe it’s the fault of anyone who read too much into a technically true report on Clippers-Nuggets trade talks. Maybe the Nets talked to Thibodeau before hiring Marks. Maybe the Hornets asked about Bogdanovic but opted for a different trade. Maybe Harris wants to sell the 76ers and just hasn’t yet.

This is a long way of saying Lawrence provides a lot of smoke for never showing a fire.

Could the Suns hire Wright? Maybe. But will Wright remain Phoenix’s top choice once it gets the opportunity to interview others who are still coaching out the NBA season? Would Wright leave college for the NBA?

It’s worth monitoring the Suns’ interest, but this is a long way from something meaningful happening.

Grizzlies sign Xavier Munford to multi-year deal, waive Ryan Hollins

Memphis Grizzlies head coach David Joerger, left, talks with Memphis Grizzlies guard Xavier Munford (14) in the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Toronto Raptors Friday, April 1, 2016, in Memphis, Tenn. (AP Photo/Brandon Dill)
AP Photo/Brandon Dill) Down
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — The Memphis Grizzlies have signed guard Xavier Munford to a multi-year contract and have waived center Ryan Hollins.

The team announced both moves Thursday. Terms of Munford’s contract were not disclosed.

Munford, who is 6-foot-3, has appeared in 10 games with the Grizzlies. The 23-year-old Munford has averaged 5.6 points, 1.9 rebounds and 0.9 assists in 14.2 minutes since signing the first of two 10-day contracts on March 16.

He had averaged 20.4 points, 6.4 assists and 4.2 rebounds in 41 games with the NBA D-League’s Bakersfield Jam.

Hollins, who is 31, averaged 3.6 points, 2.7 rebounds and 12.9 minutes in 32 games with the Grizzlies this season. The 7-footer made nine starts for Memphis.

Carmelo Anthony wants to provide input on Knicks’ coach

New York Knicks coach Kurt Rambis, right, confers with forward Carmelo Anthony during a timeout in the second half against the Denver Nuggets during an NBA basketball game Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Denver. The Nuggets won 110-94. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
AP Photo/David Zalubowski

Carmelo Anthony hinted nicely, saying the Knicks should consider Kurt Rambis but also interview other candidates to become permanent head coach.

Then, Phil Jackson reportedly started pushing to give Rambis a multi-contract.

Now, Melo must be more direct.

Ian Begley of ESPN:

Carmelo Anthony would like to have some input on the Knicks’ upcoming personnel decisions, including the club’s next head-coaching hire.

“I think you have to,” he said Wednesday night. “I think you have to have some type of input, whether it’s input or dialogue, whatever word that you want to use. I think you have to have that. I think at this point it needs to be some type of connection, some type of communication. Especially if we want to right this ship, there definitely needs to be some type of communication.”

Rambis has spent most of his interim stint with the Knicks trying to win and failing. Melo had to tell him to use young players more, because if winning weren’t possible, at least build for the future.

At this stage in his career, Melo should want a coach who gives him more valuable input than the other way around.

That doesn’t seem like Rambis, whom Jackson adores. Does Melo have the heart to deliver Jackson the news? Probably. But is Jackson willing to listen? I’m not so sure. If he’s not, he must either convince Melo to share his view or deal with an unhappy aging star on a max contract with a no-trade clause.

Melo has some power in this situation. It’s completely reasonable for him to flex it to help get the best coach possible.

Report: Brett Brown’s job safe with 76ers

Philadelphia 76ers head coach Brett Brown gestures to his team during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Toronto Raptors, Saturday, Jan. 9, 2016, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
AP Photo/Matt Slocum
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Sam Hinkie: out. Bryan Colangelo: in.

Will the 76ers’ front-office shakeup extend to the bench?

Keith Pompey of The Inquirer:

The 76ers just gave Brett Brown a contract extension that runs through 2018-19. Can he coach a team that’s trying to win now? I don’t know. He hasn’t been afforded the opportunity. But after all the good work he did with Philadelphia’s young players through the Process, he deserves a chance to find out.

Hinkie’s resignation probably doesn’t directly harm Brown’s job security. After the 76ers hired Jerry Colangelo, he explained his first encounter with Brown: “When I walked into (Brown’s) office he hugged me and said, ‘Boy, do I need you.'” Hinkie didn’t mention Brown in his 13-page resignation letter. There’s circumstantial evidence there was a disconnect between the two.

That said, neither Colangelo hired Brown. They might keep him in part because they have a good initial impression of him and in part because ownership doesn’t want to pay a second coach. But in time, the financial commitment to Brown will diminish, and the Colangelos will know more about him.

General managers often want to hire their own coach. Would the Colangelos hire Brown if they could start fresh? At minimum, he’s getting the first audition.

Robin Lopez gets ejected, claps in ref’s face (video)

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Robin Lopez – losing, knocked in the jaw and called for a foul – was ready to be done.

The Knicks center barked at officials (ignoring how him leaning over Al Jefferson facilitated the contact), drawing two technical fouls and an automatic ejection late in New York’s loss to the Hornets.

Then, Lopez clapped in a ref’s face. Because that happened after he was tossed, Lopez might get a small fine for it.