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Clippers reportedly targeting ‘big names first’ in head coaching search

May 26, 2013, 3:30 PM EDT

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There’s a good reason that the Clippers coaching search is delivering an almost daily stream of updates. If Chris Paul re-signs in free agency as expected, it’s by far the team closest to championship contention of any that are currently in need of a new head coach.

Former Suns coach Alvin Gentry is the latest candidate believed to be on L.A.’s list, joining the likes of Nate McMillan and Byron Scott as experienced leaders that the Clippers will target once the interview process formally begins.

Before the team gets to meeting with the reasonably available, however, it’s expected that it will explore options that are more of a longshot first.

From Ken Berger of

Prior to fully opening their search, however, the Clippers are said to be “going for big names first,” according to a person with knowledge of their plan. Those include Jeff and Stan Van Gundy, Pacers assistant Brian Shaw and Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins, the person said.

It’s unclear how Brian Shaw made it to the “big names” list, considering he doesn’t have any prior head coaching experience, although he has been on the staff of some elite teams. (And maybe it’s just me, but yelling ‘ball don’t lie’ at a referee doesn’t exactly make you look like a poised leader ready for the responsibilities of the job.)

Shaw and the Pacers have also made it known that he won’t be pursuing any coaching opportunities while Indiana is still playing in the postseason.

Stan Van Gundy has said that he doesn’t plan to return to coaching anywhere next season, and Jeff Van Gundy hasn’t commented on any coaching opportunities since his name surfaced in relation to the Brooklyn Nets job earlier in the year. Hollins will be coveted by many teams, but just because he’s not currently under contract in Memphis for next season doesn’t mean that he’s in a hurry to try his luck somewhere else.

It’s a nice list to assemble, and you can’t blame the Clippers for exhausting all options. But it’s more than likely the team will be looking at experienced guys like Scott, Gentry, and McMillan, all of whom appear to be eager to get back to coaching next season.

  1. dannomac21 - May 26, 2013 at 3:46 PM

    I thought the exact same thing about Shaw when he was yelling at the ref. That doesnt take away his ability to help a player progress…but it certainly speaks on his court savviness.

  2. money2long - May 26, 2013 at 4:17 PM

    why is hollins so coveted by every team but his ? is it because he took at shot at management when he told the media ” it aint easy having champagne taste on a beer budget ” ? they’re still mad at him ?

  3. jadaruler - May 26, 2013 at 5:25 PM

    Would love to see Stan coach the Clippers, but I think its Byron’s job to lose.

  4. sdlakerfan - May 26, 2013 at 5:58 PM

    I’d like to see McMillan get the job. Seemed like he did a good job with Portland for what he had. If Oden hadn’t been continually injured and Brandon Roy’s knees hadn’t given out they’d be a force right now and McMillan would likely still be there.

  5. halfbaht - May 26, 2013 at 6:54 PM

    Alvin Gentry is a big name all of a sudden?

    • jimeejohnson - May 27, 2013 at 12:27 PM

      Because of Alvin and the Chipmunks movie.

  6. sportsnut101 - May 29, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    Clippers should pass on deal only cause they need front line help Blake sucks on def for a guy that jumps out of gym he should block shots. Easy

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