Adrian Wojnarowski stated last month that the New Orleans Pelicans coaching search was moving at near a snail’s pace, with formal interviews having not yet begun. Fast forward a little over two weeks and seemingly very little has changed — at least on the exterior.
Brian Windhorst, Marc Spears and Tim McMahon tackled the topic on the latest episode of the Hoop Collective yesterday and there’s not much news to report.
Tyronn Lue likely remains the favorite, but with the Clippers’ job sitting open, there’s zero guarantees David Griffin will be able to bring him to New Orleans.
“I think that David Griffin was really interested in hiring Ty Lue, who he won a championship with in Cleveland,” Windhorst said. “I think Ty Lue was interested in Philly and I wasn’t sure that was going to work out. I think Griff thought he was in decent position. Again, as you mentioned McMahon, New Orleans was going to have to pay to get Ty Lue, but I think they were willing because I think David Griffin was seriously looking there. Now with the Clippers, I mean if Ty Lue was interested in the Sixers first, of course he’s going to be interested in the Clippers. So I don’t know if they don’t get their top pick there what direction they go in.”
One name Windhorst proceeded to throw out is Will Weaver, the current head coach of the Sydney Kings in the NBL.
“I have heard a sort of underrated name there, Will Weaver, who right now coaches the Sydney Kings of the Australian league. He was previously with the Nets and the Long Island Nets with Trajan Langdon, who is the GM underneath Griffin there. And in this last year, the Pelicans had a draft pick, Didi Louzada, who was like the 35th pick last year, a guard, they sent him down to Sydney partially due to the connection between Trajan Langdon and Will Weaver. Whether or not he’s a legitimate candidate for the lead job or as an assistant, this is super duper important.”
McMahon countered with another under-the-radar name in Jamahl Mosley, an assistant coach with the Mavericks for the last six years. However, it’s important to note that Mosley was in Cleveland prior to his current stint in Dallas — during the same time Griffin was with the Cavaliers.
“I’m going to mention one name that I think is going to be a candidate there,” McMahon said. “I definitely think fits the mold as far as being someone who is extremely popular with players, is great at developing relationships with players and has some history with David Griffin, that’s Jamahl Mosley, the assistant with Dallas. He is Luka’s go-to guy. He is the Mavericks defensive coordinator, which is, you know, his job in that role is to make chicken salad out of chicken feathers. I know Rick Carlisle feels...Mosley’s interviewed for several other jobs. I believe he is going to interview with the Pelicans. I don’t want to be firm on that.”
Windhorst wanted to follow up on McMahon’s information, but he stopped himself, saying “I know some stuff that I can’t really say here because I’ll get in trouble.” Regardless, one thing Windhorst continually emphasized during the podcast was the importance of Griffin filling New Orleans coaching vacancy correctly.
“It’s a big job with Zion. It’s a really big job. Not that Zion’s hard to handle, but it’s more about, this is the guy that’s got to motivate him.”
“One thing about Mosley, he can command respect in a room,” McMahon replied next. “And he’s one of the few assistant coaches who, if it’s a back alley brawl with NBA players, I’m going to bet on him 95% of the time.”
Windhorst doesn’t think Griffin will limit himself to hiring a big name, but at the same time, he doesn’t expect there to be money constraints on salary from ownership. Griffin is going to do what he thinks is right.
One other item to note from this particular Hoop Collective podcast, Windhorst brought up the fact that Jrue Holiday’s name was mentioned in rumors before the trade deadline, and his future, along with JJ Redick’s, could be important decisions that need to be addressed this offseason.
“I think they took some phone calls on Jrue Holiday, you know, last February. I don’t think he was out there, but I think it wasn’t like they slammed the phone down. I think that’s possibly in play. They’ve got some big, giant decisions to make.”
Let’s get the big, giant decision of naming the next head coach of the New Orleans Pelicans out of the way first.