Behold! Along with the NBA Playoffs and draft chatter, April brings with it rampant rumors of high-profile coaching moves, and typically those rumors involve John Calipari, a larger-than-life college coach who flamed out miserably in one NBA opportunity or who most closely replicates the NBA experience in the NCAA. (From playing style to paying style.)
Last year, the Chicago Bulls were the rumored target. Williams "Worldwide Wes" Wesley was reportedly offering Calipari and LeBron James as a package. That rumor turned out to be wildly false or seriously overblown; LeBron went to a team that already had a coach, and the Bulls picked Tom Thibodeau. Calipari stayed at Kentucky and claimed he never wanted to leave.
There's no LeBron this year, but Calipari's back in the mill already. And the landing spot? The New York Knicks.
Peter Vecsey of the New York Post casually presents the Cal-Knicks rumors, noting that it's conjecture at this point. But who doesn't love conjecture? Since Calipari are now a staple of the NBA rumor mill, and being that the end of the regular season marks a sudden revival of said rumor mill, let's dig in. Who will hire John Calipari?
New York Knicks. Why would the Knicks hire Calipari? Because Wes is his agent, and Wes' agency -- CAA -- reps Chris Paul. It's like the bad, proven-false LeBron+Cal rumor all over again! But this time, totally legit. Of course, there's the sticky matter of Mike D'Antoni, a high-profile coach, already having this job.
Anaheim Royals. If the Sacramento Kings do move to Anaheim, the Maloofs are expected to want to make a big splash. Paul Westphal has done good work to round out the season, but by NBA coaching standards, he's as anonymous as Alvin Gentry or Lionel Hollins or (shudder) Jay Triano. Cal would be a splash. Also, he coached Tyreke Evans and DeMarcus Cousins in college; that alone is enough for someone like Ric Bucher to report a rumored mutual interest between Cal and the Maloofs.
L.A. Lakers. There will never, ever be any validity to this rumor. But it's the Lakers, and they'll have a coaching vacancy. Someone will tie Cal to this job. Probably an anonymous source named Don Dalipari.
Miami Heat. If the Heat don't win the championship, every writer who penned an awful column guaranteeing that Erik Spoelstra would be fired (I see you, Big W.H.I.T.) will pen another awful column guaranteeing that Erik Spoelstra will be fired. Most will claim Pat Riley is taking over. Someone will suggest Calipari. And then it will be a thing, with Wes involved. And then Dwyane Wade will demand a trade! And then! And then ... !