May 8, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Nuggets head coach George Karl during the press conference announcing him NBA coach of the year at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

A Look At the LA Clippers Head Coaching Candidates

Based on all the information that’s surfacing on the Los Angeles Clippers coaching situation it seems like it’s down to four candidates though this is liable to change at any minute. Here’s the newest information pertaining each of the four:

George Karl

Coaching Record: 1131-756

Winning 57 games and 2013 Coach of the Year award wasn’t enough for Karl to retain his job with the Denver Nuggets. Now a free agent, Karl has reportedly garnered attention from the Memphis Grizzlies and Los Angeles Clippers. Ramona Shelburne of ESPN Los Angeles tweeted that the Clippers haven’t spoken directly with Karl, but has spoken to his representatives. Karl has always been a candidate for the Clips though he had one year left on his contract. He fits everything the organization wanted in a head coach. He coached the Seattle Supersonics to the NBA Finals in 1996, so the experience there. He’s also made the Conference Finals as the coach of the Milwaukee Bucks (2001) and Denver Nuggets (2009).

Karl coaching Gary Payton and Shawn Kemp on that Finals Supersonics team would likely make Chris Paul and Blake Griffin right for his system, though there may be a problem between his philosophy and Paul who has been against playing a fast paced game for most of his career.

Alvin Gentry

Coaching Record: 335-370

Gentry’s name was mentioned in the early names associated with the Los Angeles Clippers and he’s resurfaced. The Denver Nuggets and Memphis Grizzlies have now stepped in to show an interest in Gentry. Alvin’s best season as a head coach came during the 2009-10 with the Phoenix Suns when his team was defeated by the Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference finals. His former stint with the Clips didn’t go well, being fired in the third season, but amongst all of those named in this article he’s likely to be the cheapest which is a plus in Donald Sterling‘s book.

Brian Shaw

Coaching Record: 0-0

He’s the hot commodity on the market. The Brooklyn Nets, Nuggets, Clippers and any team with a vacant head coaching position likely has Shaw a top his list. The biggest problem here is inexperience. No one knows how he will interact with players on and off the court. That’s a huge problem dealing with the outgoing personality of Chris Paul. While he had a hand in the Los Angeles Lakers success under Phil Jackson and the season the Indiana Pacers just had, no one knows how great a coach he could be. The Los Angeles Times reports Shaw will be meeting face-to-face with Clippers execs this Monday.

Lionel Hollins

Coaching Record: 214-201

What’s going on between he and the Memphis Grizzlies isn’t the ordinary. While the front office hasn’t completely expressed the need to re-sign Hollins, they aren’t just kicking him out the front door. This has led to the Los Angeles Clippers asking for permission to speak to Hollins and were granted so. Here’s what the Commercial Appeal said on Hollins-Clippers:

Lionel Hollins spoke with two Los Angeles Clippers executives by phone Thursday about the team’s head coaching vacancy, according to sources with knowledge of the situation. Hollins had lengthy conversations with Clippers executive vice president Andy Roeser and general manager Gary Sacks. Clippers brass asked Hollins to continue the interview process with a meeting in Los Angeles next week.

Byron Scott:

Coaching Record: 416-521

Scott has flown under the radar, but I still suspect him to be a candidate due to his many ties with the city of Los Angeles (drafted by the Clippers in 1983, won three championships in the ’80s with the Lakers) and Chris Paul whom he coached during his time as head coach with the New Orleans Pelicans. The Clippers did speak to Scott about the position as reported by ESPN on the 31st of May. Like Karl, Scott has appeared in the NBA Finals as a head coach, twice with the Nets back to back in 2002 and 2003, suffering loses in both.

Tags: Alvin Gentry Brian Shaw Byron Cott George Karl Head Coaching Search Lionel Hollins Los Angeles Clippers NBA NBA Offseason

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