Stan Van Gundy targeted by Hawks, according to report

Doug Pensinger

The Hawks are reportedly pursuing Stan Van Gundy to be their new coach. Could this be the bait that gets them Dwight Howard?

The Atlanta Hawks have made Stan Van Gundy their top target to be their new head coach, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.

Van Gundy's last coaching stint was with the Orlando Magic, where he coached from 2007 to 2012. He led the Magic to the NBA Finals in 2009. Van Gundy was let go after the 2011-12 season and did not coach in 2012-13. He has not publicly expressed any interest in returning to coaching, but he has a strong relationship with Hawks GM Danny Ferry.

The most intriguing element of this report is Van Gundy's ties to center Dwight Howard. Howard will be a free agent following a disappointing stint with the Los Angeles Lakers. Despite his clashes with Van Gundy, a reunion could help revive his career.

The Hawks are expected to let Larry Drew walk when his contract expires June 30. However, Wojnarowski notes if the Hawks fail to sign any of their top targets, they may choose to bring Drew back.

Atlanta went 44-38 in 2012-13 and did not make it out of the first round of the playoffs.

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