Tag: David Kahn

Rick Adelman

Timberwolves introduce Rick Adelman, everyone plays nice

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Eventually, there is going to be some tension in Minnesota. There is GM David Kahn in the last year of his deal. New coach Rick Adelman brings with him real gravitas and will have say on player/personnel issues. You can see the friction coming.

But at Adelman’s introductory press conference on Wednesday it was “smiles everyone, smiles, smiles.”

Adelman said what you would expect, how he looks forward to building something with the young core of players assembled in Minnesota, led by All-Star Kevin Love. Because of the lockout Adelman and Kahn could not talk about specific players. But Adelman talked about style and this being a team that will be up-tempo.

“We want to push the ball, we want to be on the attack all the time,” he said.

Kahn said the pace of the coach hiring process was deliberately slow, and part of the reason for that was for Adelman to make up his mind and maybe think about coming to the T-Wolves. Adelman admitted he talked to Lakers but they were moving quickly and he wasn’t sure what he wanted to do. He said talks never got serious.

Meanwhile, Kahn was patient.

“I thought it would be a mistake for us to hurry up and make a decision until we saw the full array of candidates,” Kahn said.

You can bet everyone in attendance wanted to ask Adelman how he planned to bring Spanish point guard Ricky Rubio along, but he couldn’t discuss specific players. So Adelman instead talked about bringing young European players in general along.

“The players there are very good players, they are renowned over there, they have agents and family, but when you come to the NBA it’s a different game and they have to learn the game….” Adelman said. “You have to figure out what they can do in the NBA game, play to their strengths, be there for them but and let them know it is a process.”

He was already trying to tamper expectations, saying it usually takes a year or two for European players to adjust to the NBA. Which fits in with the young, learning to win in the NBA team Minnesota has. It’s just that taking your time and learning to win can create friction in the front office. Something to watch if and when we ever get a season.

Maybe Adelman came to Minnesota in spite of GM Kahn

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It is official — the Minnesota Timberwolves have announced that they have reached a deal with Rick Adelman to become the franchises next head coach. Sure, PBT and every other news outlet in America reported that yesterday, but now the team is confirming it.

But is Adelman doing this in spite of GM David Kahn? Or does he even have eyes on that job?

We praised Kahn for his summer, but Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo says that the Wolves got Adelman only because owner Glen Taylor stepped in and took over. Woj details how Adelman has not liked Kahn since Kahn was a beat reporter at the Oregonian while Adelman was the coach there.

“Rick would never agree to anything with Kahn,” one league official connected to Adelman said Monday. “This had to be [a deal] with Taylor. …Rick has talked many times of his dislike for Kahn….”

Adelman took the job despite Kahn, and the owner won’t let Kahn get in the way of what Adelman wants, and what he tells him needs to happen there.

Adelman also took the job because of the $5 million a year, four years guaranteed deal. Money talks and there were questions if the Wolves would step up on that count, but Taylor did.

This leads to another fun bit of speculation yet, something our man Matt Moore mused about on twitter.

At the start of this summer, Adelman mused about wanting a front office job. Right now he has a longer contract than Kahn and the ear of the owner. If Adelman says they need to make a player move and Kahn disagrees, it sounds like Adelman may have the power. And it is entirely possible Adelman will be able to push Kahn aside and take over both the coach and GM jobs.

Just something to watch.

But know that just because Kahn had a good summer and Adelman is on board in Minnesota, there is still plenty of friction and drama in that front office.

Give David Kahn credit, he hit a home run this summer

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Kicking Timberwolves General Manager David Kahn has been a favorite past time of bloggers and NBA writers for years.

With reason. There were moves like brining in Kurt Rambis as coach to run the triangle offense — an offense minimizes traditional point guard play — then instantly drafting Ricky Rubio and Jonny Flynn back-to-back at No. 5 and No. 6 in the draft. Rambis turned out to be a flop, anyway. There was giving a four-year deal to Darko Milicic. There were oh, so many more.

But give the man credit — this summer he knocked it out of the park.

He convinced Ricky Rubio to leave Barcelona and come over to the United States next season, even when there were serious questions if there would be a next season. Rubio has his flaws and his jump shot needs work (a lot of work), but he can defend and has a court vision you can’t teach. He could be special. And he’s just 20 but has been playing on the international stage for years.

Kahn then got lucky — the Timberwolves won just 17 games last season so they had the most ping pong balls in the lottery — and Kahn ended up with the No. 2 overall pick. He shopped it around, apparently asked for the moon, and when he didn’t get it he kept it. Then he did the right thing and took Derrick Williams with it — that guy can score at the NBA level and will be a good small forward. How much Williams can develop his defense and all around game remains to be seen, but he can finish and has looked good in transition and at the rim in pro-ams. Playing with Rubio he will get some chances to show that off.

And now Kahn has gone out and hired Rick Adelman as coach. It is a great hire for this team. (Not everyone agrees with that, but I think it is.)

First, Adelman comes in with a good relationship with Kevin Love, something Rambis lacked. Where that really matters is Love telling Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune that hiring Adelman makes it much more likely Love re-signs with Minnesota (he is up for an extension off his rookie deal whenever the lockout ends).

Where Love’s frayed relationship with his previous coach showed was when Rambis sat Love and used other tactics to get him to play better defense. Adelman comes in with gravitas, Love (and others) will listen to and respect him. They will follow. Also, both Love and Rubio are high hoops IQ guys, guys mature for their age, who should react well to Adelman’s style.

Adelman’s teams run, and with the Timberwolves roster (Love’s outlet passes, Rubio in transition, Williams and Beasley finishing) they must run. This team is made to run. The problem was last year the Wolves also turned the ball over a lot — Adelman’s teams do not do that.

When they do go into the half court, Adelman’s corner offense matches well with the triangle principles Rambis teaches and big men who can pass like Darko and Love. This should be a fit.

Kahn’s moves this summer have made the Timberwolves a lot better. They may not make the playoffs next season (this is a very deep West still and they have a long way to go) but this team is on the right track.

Minnesota got a lot better in the last few months because of David Kahn. He deserves the kudos now.

Report: Adelman near deal to become Timberwolves coach

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If this happens, David Kahn will have won the summer.

After having a second interview and some discussions about money, it appears that Rick Adelman is near a deal to take over as the head coach of the Minnesota Timberwolves, reports Bill Ingram at HoopsWorld.

Sources close to the situation told HOOPSWORLD that Adelman is expected to reach a contract agreement with the Timberwolves next week.

If, as reported, the choices really had come down to Adelman and Don Nelson, than this is a huge win for Minnesota. Actually, it’s a huge win any way you look at it.

Adelman has been to the playoffs 16 of the 20 years he has been a coach in the NBA and had title contenders in Portland and Sacramento. His teams play defense — something the Wolves were wretched at last season — and they run. That is the one thing they need to do with Ricky Rubio coming in, this needs to be a team that gets out in transition. Adelman’s half court “corner” offense uses a lot of the spacing principles of the triangle, so he is a good fit there.

Adelman also comes in with an established good relationship with Kevin Love. That was one of the failings of Kurt Rambis, but Adelman’s son played high school ball with Love and Love used to come over to the Adelman home.

Adelman reportedly wants $5 million a year for five years guaranteed, but if the Wolves are serious about winning that will be the toll.

If this comes together like it appears it will, Kahn will have convinced Rubio to leave Spain and come here despite the lockout, have drafted Derrick Williams No. 2 overall and gotten Adelman, a coach that can mold a lot of good young talent on the Wolves. He never should have let Rambis twist in the wind like he did, but bottom line is the Wolves will be a lot better on the court next season because of what Kahn did this summer. That’s a win.

Report: Adelman wants $25 million guaranteed from Wolves

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Rick Adelman has interviewed twice to be the head coach in Minnesota, met the owner, he has a good relationship with the star player, likes to have his team run and just generally is the perfect fit on paper for the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Yet, no deal so far.

Why not? It’s about the money. It’s always about the money. In this case, Adelman ask is for a massive contract from the small market Timberwolves. That according to Jerry Zgoda of the Star-Tribune.

Rick Adelman still looks like the favorite, but here’s the tricky part: I hear he wants at least $5 million a year, and five years — not four — guaranteed. Do the math and that’s at least $25 million, sports fans.

Weeks ago I was told (Timberwolves owner) Glen Taylor paid Flip Saunders big money — $5 million a year in his final years – and is willing to do so again with a young group he thinks the franchise can grow with. But…$25 million or more?

The report also says that if it’s not Adelman it will be Don Nelson. (If it is someone else, like Sam Mitchell, it wasn’t GM David Kahn’s call, and that is another story entirely).

If that really is the choice — Nelson or Adelman — then Adelman is worth the $25 million. Nelson is a better coach than his reputation allows, but he was terrible with young players in Golden State. He’s not the guy to trust with a young team right now, especially in comparison to Adelman.

As always with coaching search, expect the Wolves to take their time making a decision.