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Report: Alvin Gentry considered ‘a leading candidate’ for Cavaliers head coaching job

May 22, 2014, 10:46 PM EDT

Phoenix Suns v Boston Celtics Getty Images

The Cavaliers just finished a season that was bad enough to land them in the NBA’s Draft Lottery, and good fortune ended up smiling upon them for the second straight year as they came away with the number one overall pick once again.

But none of that was by design.

Cleveland acquired players via both trade and free agency in hopes of making a run at the playoffs in a watered-down Eastern Conference, it’s just that none of those moves ended up panning out. Before the season it was Earl Clark, Jarrett jack and Andrew Bynum, and in the middle of the campaign it was Luol Deng. But Mike brown in his second stint as Cavs head coach couldn’t make the pieces fit, and he’s now gone again as a result.

Cavaliers GM David Griffin said after winning the Draft Lottery that owning the top pick wouldn’t affect his coaching search, although he did admit it might help make his team more attractive to potential candidates. The team seems to have one in mind who might be at the top of that list, based on a prior relationship.

From Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal:

The Cavaliers have asked permission to speak with Los Angeles Clippers assistant coach Alvin Gentry, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported on Thursday. One source with knowledge of the coaching search wouldn’t confirm the report, but said the Cavs have not interviewed any candidates yet.

Gentry, 59, is considered a leading candidate for the Cavs job because of his Phoenix ties to General Manager David Griffin. He has a 335-370 record in parts of 12 seasons as a head coach with the Phoenix Suns, Clippers and Detroit Pistons. He also served as interim coach of the Miami Heat.

Gentry is an offensive-minded coach who Doc Rivers brought to Los Angeles as his associate head coach in order to help the spacing of the Clippers offense. It worked, too — L.A. finished number one in the league in offensive efficiency, with a rating of 109.4 points per 100 possessions.

Cleveland has talent, and by virtue of owning the top pick in the draft, has assets. A good, veteran coach should be able to make it work there fairly quickly, at least in terms of seeing some tangible results. Gentry’s overall experience, along with his relationship with the man running the front office would appear to make him a fine choice for the job.

  1. jerdogthompson - May 22, 2014 at 11:19 PM

    Hope AG sticks around but I can understand if he bolts. Best wishes either way Alvin.


    • duhwighthoward - May 23, 2014 at 11:28 AM

      What’s with all the love for this guy? He didn’t do anything at all for the Clippers last season. If you were at the games or watched on TV, you would notice he doesn’t speak to anyone the entire game.

      • jimeejohnson - May 23, 2014 at 12:02 PM

        Kinda like how Lakers fans love their terrible team and the chumps that play on it.

  2. rajbais - May 22, 2014 at 11:22 PM

    Alvin, Don’t take it.

    Take anything equivalent to the Suns’ 2010 talent.

    You’re a better coach than what others think.

  3. campcouch - May 23, 2014 at 2:03 AM

    What they need is a coach willing to create schemes with the players on hand. Just implementing your system doesn’t mean it matches up with the team’s makeup. Unless the Cavs get a honest to God defender,you might as well run.

  4. savvybynature - May 23, 2014 at 5:25 AM

    I like Gentry, but Cavs should trade Waiters and a 2nd rd. pick to Chicago for Thom Thibodeau and then draft Wiggins imo.
    They need someone to instill a defensive mindset if they ever want to go far, but someone who isn’t a terrible coach like Mike Brown. If they can keep Hawes or sign a guy like Gortat, they could be a playoff team next season with the right coach.

  5. scottychicago - May 23, 2014 at 7:31 AM

    Yes, because Tom Thibideau is going to force his way out of Chicago to go to Cleveland.

  6. azarkhan - May 23, 2014 at 9:47 AM

    It’s a dirty job but someone has to do it.

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