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Rick Adelman has coached some of the best teams in the NBA over the past decade, but now he will coach one of its worst. The Minnesota Timberwolves announced Tuesday that they've reached an agreement in principle for Adelman to coach in Minneapolis.
A 65 years old with 945 career wins, Adelman will become the 10th head coach in franchise history for the Timberwolves. The rest of his credentials are impressive, too. From the T'Wolves release:
Adelman's teams have reached the NBA playoffs in 16 of his 20 seasons as a head coach, and he holds an all-time playoff record of 79-78 (.503 winning percentage). He is one of only five head coaches in NBA history to win 60+ games with two different teams (Portland and Sacramento). Adelman has been runner-up for the NBA Coach of the Year award four times.
But can he manage to right a ship that's been sinking in Minnesota for the past four years? It's still an open question, but for now T'Wolves fans can rest easy. Their team couldn't possibly have landed a better candidate than Adelman.
The NBA coaching carousel stopped for Rick Adelman this time. Is his hire indicative of the teams' reluctance to hire young coaches, or is that a misnomer? Also in The Hook: how Adelman adds concrete credibility to Minnesota.
The NBA is a league of stars, and as such an important if sometimes regrettable factor in choosing a head coach is how your team's best player will feel about it. The Minnesota Timberwolves have a clear-cut "best player": 2011 All-Star Kevin Love. Love got along well with Kevin McHale who finished out the 2009 season as coach in Minnesota, but didn't seem to have the best repertoire with his replacement Kurt Rambis. Rambis benched Love for fourth quarters early in the 2011 season, drawing the ire of the forward (and eventually looking terrible, once Love exploded in terms of production).
Will there be any problems with new Timberwolves coach Rick Adelman, who reportedly came to terms with the team on Monday? Probably not. Before Adelman's hire was confirmed, the All-Star talked to Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.
Yes, if it's true Love said Adelman's presence would "absolutely" play a factor in whether he signs a contract extension with the team. "When I talked about the prospect of me re-signing, I always said one of the things we'd have to have is a great coach," he said. "If it's true, we've got a great coach."
Love has known Adelman since he was in junior-high school and he played high-school ball with Adelman's son Patrick.
Love is up for an extension to his rookie deal whenever the NBA lockout ends, provided that the new collective bargaining agreement doesn't change the way early extensions work. Love had previously indicated he may hold off on signing an extension, leaving open the opportunity to leave in free agency once his rookie deal ends. Players almost never do that unless the team isn't willing to offer a contract the player seeks; every superstar drafted since 2003 has signed a second contract with the team that picked them, though LeBron James made it vogue to sign a shorter second deal.
Adelman's acumen, history and the credibility he lends the lost-at-sea franchise are what got him hired. But his relationship with Love could end up being the most important factor here. Minnesota can't afford to lose the one star it has, and this looks like a strong step toward preventing that.
Rick Adelman has agreed to terms with the Minnesota Timberwolves and will become the team's next head coach, reports Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. The Wolves fired Kurt Rambis in July, and interviewed a number of candidates. Adelman will have been considered by most to be a best fit, based on his record of winning, his up-tempo inclinations, his sanity as compared to candidates Don Nelson and Larry Brown, and his close personal relationship with fellow Oregonian Kevin Love.
Adelman was reportedly seeking a five-year deal worth $25 million. He spent the last four seasons with the Houston Rockets, where he made the playoffs twice and led the team to its only playoff series win of the Tracy McGrady-Yao Ming era. In 2010-11, the Rockets went 43-39, but missed the postseason in the deep West. Houston had the league's No. 4 offense.
Adelman counts Wolves forward Love as a family friend, as R.A.'s son played high school ball with the All-Star in Lake Oswego, Oregon. Zgoda talked to Love before the hire was confirmed, and Love said that the move "absolutely" will factor into whether he signs a contract extension.
Adelman has a career winning percentage over 60 percent, and is one of the winningest head coaches without an NBA championship. In Minnesota, they'll be glad to see improvement in lieu of parades. For now, at least.
The Minnesota Timberwolves are negotiating a contract with Rick Adelman to make him the team's next head coach, reports Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. The Wolves have interviewed Adelman multiple times since firing Kurt Rambis in July, and reports by Zgoda and others had indicated that Adelman was the team's first choice.
But Adelman, who coached the Houston Rockets for the past four seasons, is seeking a five-year deal worth $25 million, Zgoda reports. After the Wolves paid Rambis to go away, that might seem steep.
If any available coach is worth it, it'd be Adelman, who can lay claim to some of the best offenses of the past 20 years with spells in Portland and Sacramento. Adelman has a career winning percentage over 60 percent, though he's been blessed with solid rosters, except for a stint in Golden State. Minnesota would more closely resemble that than any other team Adelman has coached; the Wolves have gone just 32-132 over the past two seasons.
Rick Adelman plans to accept the Minnesota Timberwolves' offer to become the team's next head coach, reports Bill Ingram of HOOPSWORLD. Recent reports out of Minneapolis have suggested that the next coach of the cellar-dwelling Wolves would be either Adelman or Don Nelson, with the Adelman hire held up by financial concerns.
Adelman coached the Houston Rockets over the past four seasons. The Rockets missed the 2011 playoffs despite a 43-39 record; midseason trades (including Shane Battier for Hasheem Thabeet and a draft pick) seemed destined to toss Houston into the tank, but with Kevin Martin, Luis Scola and Kyle Lowry, Adelman kept the Rockets as one of the best offenses in the league.
The Wolves fired Kurt Rambis in July after a combined 32-132 record in two seasons. Minnesota has added 2009 draft pick Ricky Rubio and 2011 No. 2 pick Derrick Williams already this offseason, and is expected to be active once the NBA lockout ends.
Rick Adelman and Don Nelson have reportedly emerged as the favorites to be named the Minnesota Timberwolves' next head coach. Of the two, Adelman appears to be the top choice, but his $5 million a year, five-year contract demand is causing the Timberwolves to think a little harder about the decision.
Adelman most recently coached the Houston Rockets during the past four seasons. After winning 108 games during his first two years, he won just 85 in the final two and did not have his contract renewed. He has coached 20 NBA seasons for four different teams and won more than 900 games.
While Nelson has an even more impressive resume, that his name continues to emerge here is a bit curious. Nelson's last coaching stint with the Golden State Warriors ended acrimoniously with charges that he was undermining the organization and was sticking around only long enough to break Lenny Wilkens' all-time wins record. His 1,335 career wins are obviously impressive, but he has left each of his past two jobs on less-than amicable terms.
Rick Adelman has been the front-runner for the vacant Minnesota Timberwolves' head coaching position ever since his name came up as a possibility to coach the David Kahn ran franchise. After meeting with the Wolves for the second time in two weeks, however, it appears Minnesota is still weighing its options.
Adelman left an interview with Wolves owner Glen Taylor in the Twin Cities and returned to Portland without a job offer, according ESPN's Ric Bucher. Bucher went on to write that Adelman left "without an offer to be the Timberwolves' next head coach or a promise that one would be forthcoming."
Adelman returned to Minneapolis late Monday night, had dinner with general manager David Kahn and met with Taylor at his home on Tuesday before flying home again, the source said.
The Wolves may still be planning to bring back a couple of the other coaching candidates for a second interview -- namely Don Nelson, Larry Brown or Bernie Bickerstaff -- before ultimately offering the team's head coaching position to whomever they feel worthy.
Apparently the report that said Adelman has already locked up the Wolves job and is looking at potential assistants is false, by the way, or Kahn is making this thing awfully awkward once again.
Rick Adelman will meet with Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor on Tuesday, reports ESPN's Ric Bucher. Adelman formally interviewed with Wolves GM David Kahn last week, and is reportedly interested in the team's head coaching job. The Wolves have gone 32-132 over the past two seasons. Adelman has a career 945-616 record as an NBA head coach.
Adelman spent the last four seasons with the Houston Rockets; he missed the playoffs in each of the past two seasons despite finishing over .500 -- such is the strength of the Western Conference -- and parted ways with the team due to a rift among Adelman and management. Oddly enough, the Rockets hired former Wolves GM and interim coach Kevin McHale to replace Adelman.
The Wolves fired Kurt Rambis in July after two dreadful seasons. Minnesota has had a bit of a makeover this summer, bringing 2009 pick Ricky Rubio to the team and taking Derrick Williams No. 2 overall in the June draft. It's expected that once the season officially starts the Wolves will be active in the trade market, in part because Kahn is always active in the trade market and in part because there are significant roster adjustments to be made.
If the Minnesota Timberwolves can land Rick Adelman, the summer of David Kahn will be complete, and it will have been glorious.
Rick Adelman is "definitely interested" in the Minnesota Timberwolves' head coach job and has contacted potential assistant coaches, reports Joe Schmit of KSTP-TV in Minneapolis. Adelman formally interviewed for the job earlier this week, a month after speaking to Wolves GM David Kahn over the phone. In the interim, Kahn had interviewed a number of candidates, including Don Nelson, Larry Brown, Sam Mitchell and Mike Woodson.
Adelman is one of the game's great offensive coaches, leaning on his work in the 1990s with the Portland Trail Blazers and in the late '90s and first half of the 2000s with the Sacramento Kings. The Houston Rockets also boasted a strong offense last season despite an odd collection of pieces; nonetheless, the Rockets and Adelman parted ways over an apparent disinterest from the coach to add a young apprentice to his staff.
The Wolves fired Kurt Rambis after two wildly unsuccessful seasons. Adding a coach of Adelman's repute would count as a third major coup in Kahn's offseason, after the contract agreement with Ricky Rubio and the drafting of Derrick Williams.
The Minnesota Timberwolves still don't have a coach. Normally, this would be a problem, given that it's nearly September. But with the NBA lockout having thrown the 2011-12 season into question, there's no particular need to have a coach in place right now. As it turns out, taking their time could pay off for the Wolves, as Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports that the team finally convinced Rick Adelman to interview properly for the job.
Wolves GM David Kahn had previously discussed the job opening with Adelman over the phone, but only now was able to draw him to face-to-face meetings with himself and higher management, including team owner Glen Taylor, who chairs the NBA's labor committee.
Adelman parted ways with the Houston Rockets after a 43-39 season that didn't result in a playoff berth but did pleasantly surprise most observers. Adelman has one of the best coaching records in NBA history and would seem to be a perfect fit with Minnesota's odd but promising roster. It'd be a major coup for Kahn to convince Adelman to take on the task.
Sam Mitchell, a former NBA Coach of the Year award winner, will interview for the open Minnesota Timberwolves job, reports Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. Mitchell spent 10 of his 13 seasons as a player with the Wolves. He coached the Toronto Raptors for four seasons and change, winning C.O.Y. in 2007 after taking the Raps to an Atlantic Division title with a 47-35 record.
Mitchell joins an eclectic crew of Wolves candidates, including Don Nelson, Larry Brown, Bernie Bickerstaff, Terry Porter and Mike Woodson. Rick Adelman had discussions with Wolves GM David Kahn, but didn't visit Minneapolis as the others did. Mike Fratello has also been mentioned as a potential candidate.
The Wolves fired Kurt Rambis in July after the team went 32-132 in two seasons under the former Los Angeles Lakers assistant. However, that 32-132 record is also stuck to Kahn, who arrived in 2009 and has rebuilt the roster. Kevin Love made the All-Star team in 2010-11, but the rest of the roster remains unproven and, in many cases, unappealing.
The Minnesota Timberwolves need a new head coach, and have already interviewed quite a few of them. And, well, this is interesting:
Zgoda went on to tweet that when exactly Brown would interview is up in the air because of a death in the family. He also mentioned that Wolves GM David Kahn and Larry Brown probably won't fit because of Brown's tendency to overhaul teams' rosters and Kahn's previous statements saying he has no intention of doing so.
The Minnesota Timberwolves will interview Don Nelson on Sunday for their vacant head coaching position, according to the Minnesota Star-Tribune. Nelson is the latest in a string of interviews the Timberwolves have held over the last week, including ones with Terry Porter, Mike Woodson, Bernie Bickerstaff and Rick Adelman.
Matt Moore of ProBasketballTalk has a strange feeling that Nelson will be the next coach:
This feels like it’s going to happen, despite all the better candidates, but that may just be wishful thinking for the hilarity of Nelson coaching the Timberwolves.
Nelson is no stranger to Minnesota, as the original report from the Star-Tribune points out, because his daughter and grandchildren live in the area. So one way or another, Nelson will be in Minnesota.
After Nelson, there could still be a few more candidates to interview for the job. With the league still in a lockout, there is no rush for the T'Wolves to make a decision anytime soon.
Rick Adelman, who was let go by the Houston Rockets after a 43-39 season, will interview for the vacant Minnesota Timberwolves head coach position on Saturday, reports Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. It's quite a surprise given that Adelman interviewed for the Los Angeles Lakers position but wasn't considered a likely candidate -- by his own choice -- for any other openings.
The Timberwolves have gone 32-132 over the past two seasons. Landing Adelman would be an incredible coup. Adelman has a career regular season record of 945-616 as head coach, and a 79-78 career postseason record. Of the 25 coaches in NBA history with at least 1,000 games on the ledger, Adelman is one of just six with career winning percentages over 60 percent.
The Wolves recently fired Kurt Rambis after two disastrous seasons. If GM David Kahn -- also hired two years ago, but still in place despite the losses -- misses on this coaching hire, he could be on the fast track to the firing line.
The third person to interview for the vacant Minnesota Timberwolves coaching position will be Portland Trail Blazers assistant Bernie Bickerstaff, according to CSN Northwest's Dwight Jaynes. Bickerstaff will interview on Friday and will follow former Bucks and Suns coach Terry Porter and former Hawks coach Mike Woodson.
Bickerstaff is a long-time NBA coach that has a lot of experience as the head man. He has coached for the Seattle Supersonics, Denver Nuggets, Washington Bullets and Charlotte Bobcats. For his career, he holds a 414-512 record. He returned to Portland last season to be an assistant under Nate McMillan, whom he once coached early in his career.
Like Woodson and Porter, Bickerstaff is known as a half-court oriented coach. This pokes a hole in general manager David Kahn's stated goal to find a coach willing to teach an up-tempo style.
Mike Woodson will interview for the open Minnesota Timberwolves head coach job on Tuesday, reports Perry A. Farrell of the Detroit Free Press (via HoopsHype). Woodson, who was the head coach of the Atlanta Hawks for six years before being fired in 2010, is considered, with Lawrence Frank, a finalist for the Detroit Pistons head coach job. Those two positions are the only currently in play, and no other jobs are likely to come open between now and the start of the next basketball season.
The Wolves have interviewed former Bucks and Suns coach Terry Porter, and are expected to formally consider legend Don Nelson, who has expressed interest from his perch in retirement. In his virgin coaching search in 2009, Wolves GM David Kahn considered a wide number of candidates before settling on Kurt Rambis.
Rambis was fired earlier in July after the Wolves went just 32-132 over the past two seasons.
In announcing the firing of Rambis, Kahn said he'd be looking for a coach more committed to the fast break. Like Porter, Woodson is puzzling in that context. The Hawks finished No. 27 in the NBA in pace factor in Woodson's final season in Atlanta, and over his tenure averaged a finish of No. 20.
For more on the Wolves' coach search, visit Canis Hoopus.
The first person formally interviewed in the Minnesota Timberwolves' coaching search is not Don Nelson, but rather, former Milwaukee Bucks and Phoenix Suns coach Terry Porter, according to a report by Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Zgoda reports that while the Wolves have talked to Nelson by phone, Porter is the first candidate to come to Minnesota to be interviewed.
Porter has a career winning percentage of .460 in two-plus years as a coach. He coached Milwaukee for two years from 2003 to 2005, then Phoenix for half a season in 2008/09 before being fired after 51 games.
Porter is a somewhat surprising choice to interview, given general manager David Kahn's preference for an up-tempo coach. The primary reason Porter was fired in Phoenix in 2009 was because the teams' stars were resistant to Porter's goal to make the Suns a more half-court oriented team.
For more on the Wolves' coaching search, visit Canis Hoopus.
Don Nelson is interested in becoming the next coach of the Minnesota Timberwolves. If it happens, it won't magically turn around a destitute franchise. But it's not as if there are many better options.
Don Nelson was mentioned as a candidate to replace the recently departed Kurt Rambis as head coach of the Minnesota Timberwolves last week. It didn't seem like something that would ever come to fruition, but the NBA's all-time leader in wins is apparently serious about returning to the coaching ranks.
Nelson talked to the Minneapolis Star Tribune's Jerry Zgoda on Friday, calling from his Maui beach home of course, and shed some light on why he'd be interested in moving from balmy Hawaii to blustery Minnesota. The former Golden State Warriors coach also confirmed the Wolves interest, saying he's already had a 40-minute phoner with president of basketball operations David Kahn.
Nelson, who has a daughter and grandchildren living in nearby Minnetonka, summed up his interest rather succinctly while talking to the Star Tribune.
"I think it'd be a great fit. I love Minnesota," Nelson said. "They have an opening and I don't have a job. I'm a lifer. I love basketball. I don't know how else to put it."
Nelson wouldn't seem to be the best Rambis replacement considering that he's been rather hard on young players in the past -- the make-up of most of Minnesota's roster -- but the 71-year-old clarified that sentiment.
"Yeah, I don't like rookies that can't play," he said when asked about that impression. "Rookies that can play, I play 'em a lot. They're not rookies they have there. They're young players. You can bring those guys around and be competitive, be a real good young team. There's talent there. Maybe they just need to change the tempo and play a little faster there."
Nelson mentioned his affinity for coaching a roster that includes Ricky Rubio, Kevin Love, Derrick Williams, Wesley Johnson, Michael Beasley and Anthony Tolliver, but his most interesting comments were regarding former Warriors lottery pick Anthony Randolph.
Randolph and Nelson apparently didn't see eye-to-eye in Golden State, leading to his eventual landing in the Land of Misfit Toys in Minnesota, but the coach doesn't foresee that being a problem if he's able to get the Wolves job.
"I drafted Randolph. He didn't play very well for me. He's another guy, like Beasley, who has talent, but he has to reach down and get it. He didn't work that hard for me, but he's 6-11 and he can do things nobody else can do right now with running, jumping and playing around the rim. He's just got to reach down and become a player."
If Nelson does take his talents to Minnesota, this experiment would be interesting -- and hey, it just might work.
The Minnesota Timberwolves are in the market for a new head coach after firing Kurt Rambis last week, and two of the coaches they are reportedly considering are also two of the winningest coaches in NBA history. Former Golden State Warriors coach Don Nelson and former Houston Rockets coach Rick Adelman are on the team's preliminary list, according to ESPN's Marc Stein.
It's unclear whether either would volunteer to take the job, considering Minnesota's instability. One would think Adelman would not be interested in coaching a rebuilding team after leaving Houston for that very reason. Nelson, on the other hand, reportedly has interest in the job. Both would certainly qualify as the "up-tempo" coach general manager David Kahn has coveted.
Rambis departed after compiling just 32 wins in two years on the job. His firing was inevitable for a while, but was only made official last week.
"Nellieball" might be making its way to the Twin Cities. According to ESPN's Marc Stein, league sources say the NBA's all-time coaching wins leader is "intrigued by the talent" on the Timberwolves' roster.
Kurt Rambis was officially fired as head coach of the Timberwolves earlier Tuesday. The move came as no surprise and had been anticipated for weeks.
Nelson most recently coached with the Golden State Warriors in the 2009-2010 season before being dismissed days before the start of training camp last year.
This news comes on the heels of Wolves' GM David Kahn's press conference, in which he announced he wants the team to have a more up-tempo attitude despite leading the NBA in possessions per game last season.
Nelson would certainly fit the bill for Kahn's wishes, as his teams typically play with small lineups and a focus on the fast break. Nelson has previously expressed a fondness for Wolves point guard Ricky Rubio and power forward Kevin Love, Stein said.
Minnesota Timberwolves general manager David Kahn gave a press conference announcing his decision to fire head coach Kurt Rambis on Tuesday afternoon. While most watching were scratching their heads at some of the things Kahn said, he did provide some explanation as to why Rambis was fired.
Kahn said the primary reason he let Rambis go was because of a philosophical difference with regards to the team's style of play.
"We need to find somebody who perhaps is better prepared to coach an uptempo style on both ends of the floor," Kahn said.
It's not exactly clear what he means, since the Timberwolves played at the league's fastest pace last season. Kahn spoke about the need for the new coach to have an "up-tempo DNA," and said it became uncomfortable for him to try to force the style on Rambis.
Kahn also took the blame for dragging the process out and not firing Rambis immediately, saying he felt at the time that it would be best for the two of them to not speak for a while after the season. He officially made the decision on Monday morning, and the only hold-up was over whether Rambis would take a front-office job. Kahn has yet to begin a search for a new coach, but said several coaches have already expressed interest in the position.
Kurt Rambis has now been officially fired as the Minnesota Timberwolves' head coach. The team just sent out a press release confirming the news. In it, general manager David Kahn paid respect to Rambis and said this is "the right time" to make a change now that the roster is better understood.
"I want to thank Kurt for his contributions to our franchise and wish him the best in his future endeavors," said David Kahn, Timberwolves President of Basketball Operations. "His arrival signaled we were serious about building a championship-contending ballclub over the course of time. We have accumulated a solid nucleus of young talent with a bright future during the last two years. I am hopeful Kurt receives his share of the credit for helping develop that talent and his contributions are not forgotten as we become a better basketball team.
"It is always hard to make these decisions. It is especially hard when it involves somebody of Kurt's reputation. Even so, this is the right time for us to make a head coaching change now that we've identified our roster and its specific needs."
A press conference announcing the news is scheduled for 3 p.m. EST.
In a move that has appeared inevitable for weeks now, the Minnesota Timberwolves have fired head coach Kurt Rambis, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. Rambis has been rumored to be fired since the Timberwolves completed yet another dismal season, but general manager David Kahn had not made the move. It appears he has now, and a formal announcement is expected shortly.
Rambis had a dismal 32-132 record in two seasons as the Timberwolves' coach. He was handicapped by a poor roster, but he also couldn't get his players to learn the Triangle offense. His teams also struggled down the stretch both years instead of improving as the season progressed. He had come aboard in 2009 after being a longtime assistant for Phil Jackson with the Los Angeles Lakers. His only previous head coaching experience was a brief stay as the Lakers' coach during the 1999 lockout-shortened season.
The Minnesota Timberwolves still haven't officially fired Kurt Rambis as their head coach, but speculation on his successor has now turned to former Missouri coach Quin Snyder, who has reportedly interviewed for the position with David Kahn, according to the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
Philadelphia 76ers assistant Quin Snyder has been interviewed by Kahn, an NBA coach with knowledge of the situation said Monday night.
Snyder, 45, just completed his first season as an assistant to Sixers coach Doug Collins and has been a head coach at Missouri and for the Austin Toros in the NBA Development League from 2007-10.
Snyder hasn't been a household name since his stormy tenure at Missouri, which included postseason appearances every year, but no finishes higher than fifth in the Big 12. But his three years with the Toros were very successful, as he lead Austin to the NBA D-League Finals once and followed that with consecutive NBDL Semifinals appearances. The Toros won more than 30 games in each season under Snyder.
Snyder, however, is about as off-the-wall an idea for the next Timberwolves coach as Mike Krzyzewski was. So David Kahn is clearly in full control of this coaching search.
For more on the Timberwolves' coaching search, visit SB Nation's Minnesota blog, Canis Hoopus.
Minnesota Timberwolves general manager David Kahn has decided to fire head coach Kurt Rambis, but won't officially do so until after Thursday's 2011 NBA Draft, reports Yahoo!'s Adrian Wojnarowski. Rambis has had two rough seasons in Minnesota after arriving as a highly-touted assistant coach under Phil Jackson with the L.A. Lakers. The Wolves have gone 32-132 under Rambis, the worst two-year record in the NBA.
The Wolves have left Rambis hanging on the vine since season's end, something that made the coach bristle earlier in June when he attended draft workouts in Minneapolis. He told reporters that he'd have handled the situation differently were he in Kahn's shoes.
Early this offseason, Wolves owner Glen Taylor determined he'd retain Kahn going forward, but left Rambis' fate up to the GM. The Wolves this week announced the arrival of top 2009 Draft pick Ricky Rubio, who remains in Spain for two seasons before making the leap for next year. The Wolves have the No. 2 pick in Thursday's draft.
The Minnesota Timberwolves are quite busy these days: Ricky Rubio is scheduled to announce his decision to join the team for the 2011-12 season on Friday, and the franchise has the No. 2 and No. 20 picks in the 2011 NBA Draft, just a week away. But now is the time GM David Kahn has chosen to sit down with coach Kurt Rambis to talk about the future of the Wolves, and whether the team's head coach of the past two seasons will be there for it, reports the Associated Press.
Kahn has left Rambis' future hanging in the balance since the end of the regular season some two months ago; Rambis has attended draft workouts in Minnesota and told the media that were he in Kahn's shoes, he would have handled the decision differently. Few consider Rambis' work with the Wolves inspiring; the team has won a league-low 32 games over the past two seasons combined, including a league-worst 17 in 2010-11.
Rubio's arrival and the sure death of the Triangle offense in Minnesota should mean the end for Rambis, but the fact that Kahn has waited so long has to give anyone predicting what's next for the Wolves pause.
Kurt Rambis does not know whether he'll remain the head coach of the Minnesota Timberwolves. David Kahn, the team's hilarious general manager, has either not made a decision or just doesn't want to give Rambis the pleasure of knowing his fate. Given that the Wolves' season ended five weeks ago, this is somewhat surprising.
And when Rambis shows up to NBA Draft workouts being held at the Wolves' facilities, and being led by Kahn, things are going to get awkward. Take it away, Jon Krawczynski of the Associated Press:
They also watched as Kahn and Rambis stood not far from each other despite the uncertainty surrounding their working relationship. The president and the coach who just two years ago were billed as the tandem that was going to turn around one of the league's most woebegone franchises did not speak to each other during the 15 minutes the workout was opened to the media, but it was not clear if the two met or spoke at any other point in the session.
Canis Hoopus breaks down the implications:
To be perfectly honest, I have a lot of respect for Rambis on this move. I'm sure his motives are probably a bit more selfish than I'd like to imagine, but the end effect is one that I can live with: He sat in a room full of about 50 NBA executives and showed the entire league just how big of a clown show is being run by David Kahn and Rob Moor at 600 First Avenue. If the guy who hired him doesn't have the courtesy to let him know (to his face) where he stands...well, there's a draft to prepare for and we wouldn't want a repeat of '09.
Odd times in Minnesota, and it's unclear how many candidates will jump at the chance to work under Kahn.
Minnesota Timberwolves general manager David Kahn will apparently keep his job for the time being, as team owner Glen Taylor told Sid Hartman of the Minneapolis Star Tribune that he is "OK' with Kahn, who has been a firebrand since taking over the franchise in 2009. (The team has gone 32-132 in that span.) But head coach Kurt Rambis might not be safe. Taylor indicates that Rambis' future is up to Kahn.
"David hasn't talked to [Rambis] and hasn't said what they're going to do yet," Taylor said. "I'm still waiting there."
Rambis, also hired in 2009, has two more years remaining on his contract. The Wolves could elevate assistant coaches Reggie Theus (a former NBA head coach) or Bill Laimbeer, or Kahn could begin a coaching search parallel to NBA Draft preparation. The Wolves have the No. 2 and No. 20 picks in the June 23 draft. Rumors have suggested Minnesota will look to package the No. 2 pick for a veteran star.
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