The status of Dell Demps and Alvin Gentry continues to linger over the franchise.
Scott Kushner wrote an excellent piece for The New Orleans Advocate on the day-to-day nature of things at Airline Drive this morning, I encourage you all to read it. If history is any guide to how Tom Benson and Mickey Loomis operate, it is unlikely the organization will issue any grand report on the futures of Demps or Gentry. Just last year this same question on the fate of the front office and head coach hung for months left unanswered.
Alvin Gentry enters the final guaranteed year of his contract for the 2017-18 season; the New Orleans Pelicans hold a team option on the 2018-19 season according to reports when Gentry was initially hired.
As for Dell Demps? Good luck finding a definitive answer on his contract status. Mickey Loomis said in May 2015 that Dell's contract extended beyond the 2015-16 season. One assumes that the general manager’s contract extends into the 2017-18 season but exact knowledge is hard to find. Dell Demps last received a reported contract extension in November 2012. Terms were not disclosed. Is he entering his final year this season as a lame duck? It is not in the Pelicans' interest to disclose that information, so good luck.
Has a decision been made on Dell Demps and Alvin Gentry for next year? Maybe. If if has been made, I assume they will be back. I doubt the organization could decide to fire the GM and/or coach and successfully keep the information under wraps. However, if the decision is to keep them, expect no announcement as such. Things just keep on keeping on.
The other option is that evaluation is ongoing or has yet to begin. Considering the other commitments of those ranking above Dell Demps in the Pelicans hierarchy, this feels more likely. Is Mickey Loomis, President of Basketball Operations, intimately involved in the day-to-day basketball activities? Likely not. But, he is formally the boss on the basketball side of things and the most logical candidate to evaluate Dell Demps. Loomis has been busy with his other job, that of Saints General Manager. After a weekend of chasing undrafted free agents for his NFL job sinking his teeth into evaluating the NBA franchise may be next on his agenda.
If those evaluations return positive, expect no announcement. Why go through the trouble of a press conference or even press release to confirm that the GM and head coach, currently under contract, are not fired? Alternatively, if the decision is to move on, we will all read about it on Twitter within a matter of minutes once Demps or Gentry relay the decision to their agents and through them to Adrian Wojnarowski.
None of this is to tackle what the correct decision is for New Orleans. And honestly, deciding to fire either of them would hinge on the ability to hire a better replacement. Firing Demps and Gentry to bring in Jeff Van Gundy and a GM of his choice? Sign me up. Looking at a less appetizing slate of choices? Talking to Vinny Del Negro or Mark Jackson? Hard pass.
Are you waiting for a definitive answer from the Pelicans on Dell Demps and Alvin Gentry? You may be waiting a long time.