The 2020 NBA offseason has already featured several head-coaching changes across the league. The Chicago Bulls let go of Jim Boylen and hired Billy Donovan after he mutually parted ways with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Doc Rivers got the boot after the Los Angeles Clippers failed to live up to their championship aspirations once again, but he has landed a new gig with the Philadelphia 76ers. There are still a handful of openings around the league, but recent news has tied some notable names to potential jobs.
Van Gundy’s reputation as a teacher of the game in 11-plus seasons with the Miami Heat, Orlando Magic and Detroit Pistons has made him a formidable candidate for a young Pelicans roster.
Besides Van Gundy, Clippers assistant Ty Lue is also one of four expected finalists for the New Orleans job and has a meeting with the team this week. However, the Clippers and Rockets are pursuing Lue for their own openings as well, per Wojnarowski:
Clippers assistant coach Ty Lue’s candidacy for the Rockets’ head-coaching job has gathered significant momentum after a meeting with Houston’s ownership and management Monday, sources told ESPN.
The Rockets are competing with the Clippers for Lue and could try to extend an offer before Los Angeles has completed its search process, but that isn’t expected to happen before Houston meets with former coach Jeff Van Gundy this week, sources said.
Lue previously served as head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers, where he won a championship in 2016. He has an overall head-coaching record of 128-83.
Another possible candidate for the Clippers job is former All-Star and current assistant Sam Cassell:
Clippers interviewed assistant Sam Cassell for franchise’s head coaching job on Tuesday, sources tell ESPN. Cassell spent six seasons on Doc Rivers’ staff.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) October 14, 2020
Cassell won three rings during his playing career before serving as an assistant with the Washington Wizards and Clippers.
There are five current head-coaching openings around the league: New Orleans, Houston, Indiana, Oklahoma City and L.A. (Clippers).