Is the Cavalier coaching search being hindered by the team’s owner? There have already been talks about Dan Gilbert’s impact on the NBA Draft, but making matters (potentially) worse is his impact on the search for a new head coach. On Wednesday morning, ESPN.com basketball scribe Brian Windhorst took to the airwaves of WKNR 850/ESPNCleveland and painted a picture that will do very little for the confidence of Cavalier fans.
In their head coaching search, the former Cavaliers beat writer depicted two separate coaching searches going on—one led by a splash-needy majority owner in Gilbert and his checkbook, ultimately turning up very little; the other led by team general manager David Griffin and a more realistic approach, leading to interviews of individuals like Alvin Gentry and Tyronn Lue among others.
Gilbert was reportedly behind the courting of University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari, who left millions on the table to stay in the NCAA. Gilbert has also been linked to big-name collegiate coaches like Michigan State’s Tom Izzo and Florida’s Billy Donovan. Windhorst, however, stated that David Griffin’s process has netted different results. He’s looking at individuals who are interested in being the head coach of this team rather than attempting to sell them on the potential benefits. He also appears to have his sites set on a former colleague, but the road block to anything being finalized could be the man who is set to hold his own interviews later this week.
“From the start, David Griffin’s pick has been Alvin Gentry,” Windhorst said. “I think that will be a hard sell to Dan Gilbert.”
Gilbert, by all accounts, will be holding interviews with Gentry and Lue later this week. Windhorst also added that Mark Price, despite his interview and fan fare, will not be named head coach of this Cavaliers team, but could potentially be considered for an assistant spot. Wrapping things up, the former PD writer said that more important than the coaching search is the selection at the June 26 NBA Draft. “I cannot emphasize enough about the importance of this draft for the Cavs—I don’t care who the coach is.”
Introduced to the media as the general manager of the Cavaliers, Griffin stated that the front office and ownership group would search for the next Cavs head coach as a collective, led by him. ““I will not be making any decision alone. But I will be leading this process,” Griffin said. “This is not about being first, this is about being right.”