The Clippers are suddenly in the offseason and facing major decisions about the direction of the franchise after losing their first-round playoff series to the Memphis Grizzlies, 4-2. Point guard and potential franchise anchor Chris Paul is a free agent and the most-pressing issue facing the team heading into next season.
Team president Andy Roeser indicated after the game that despite Del Negro's interest in returning, the organization will "assess where we are going," which isn't exactly a vote of confidence for the coach. Roeser also downplayed the impact Paul would have on other big decisions this summer, but it would be hard to believe his voice won't be heard.
The Clippers had plenty of talent available this year but struggled in the toughness department, eventually folding under the pressure and physical play delivered by the Grizzlies.
If Paul wants to return to the Clippers and wants Del Negro to join him, then the Clippers coach should be safe. If Del Negro doesn't return, Paul will surely want to see which coach the Clippers can land to lead a team potentially loaded with talent.
The Clippers will have other tough roster moves to make if they are able to sign Paul since his big salary number will push them over the cap. Del Negro has a winning percentage of 55.6 percent in his three seasons with the Clippers, which includes a 6-11 record in the playoffs the past two seasons.