The Racine Journal Times is reporting that current Milwaukee Bucks assistant coach Kelvin Sampson is garnering the support of some members of the Clippers to be the team’s next head coach.
Sampson reportedly has the backing of Clipper Eric Gordon, who Sampson coached at Indiana University.
Sampson’s much-publicized departure from the college ranks was controversial, but it didn’t stop him from instantly landing a job in the NBA, first as a consultant to the Spurs for the remainder of the 2008 season and then as an Assistant Coach for the Bucks on Scott Skiles’ staff for the past two seasons.
Coupled with his time on various National teams over the years and his successes at the college level, the time Sampson spent with Skiles has led him to be mentioned in more openings than just the Clippers this off-season, and it seems as thought it’s quickly turning into a when, and not an if, he gets his chance to be the guy in charge of an NBA team.
As far as how he would fit in as the coach of the Clippers, I think he’d be a good match for the team in it’s current state. Sampson’s task with the Bucks this past season was largely working with point guard Brandon Jennings, so he’s shown an ability to get the most out of a talented young guard.
As previously noted in this space, the Clippers appear to be taking the approach this off-season of targeting free agents before lining up their next head coach , and that tactic could blow up in their face as the services of guys like Sampson could no longer be available by the time the team begins to conduct their search in earnest.