Nets must wait if they want JVG
by By Sam Amick, USA TODAY Sports
The Brooklyn Nets’ coaching search hasn’t officially started yet, and there are already delays.
Jeff Van Gundy, the former Houston Rockets and New York Knicks coach who is currently an ESPN analyst, confirmed in a text message to USA TODAY Sports that he has a personal policy of not talking to teams about jobs as long as a coach is in place. The Nets made assistant coach P.J. Carlesimo the interim head coach after firing Avery Johnson on Thursday, and it appears Van Gundy — who is known to be a top candidate — will stay out of this fray for now.
Asked if reports from Yahoo! Sports and CBSSports.com were accurate that he would never talk to a team that has a coach in place, Van Gundy wrote, “That’s true.” Van Gundy had declined comment to USA TODAY Sports on Thursday, writing then, “(It’s) totally inappropriate for me to comment at all since P.J. (Carlesimo) deserves every chance to succeed.”
Carlesimo has a combined 204-297 record over eight seasons as a head coach for the Portland Trail Blazers, Golden State Warriors and Seattle SuperSonics/Oklahoma City Thunder. His last position was with the Thunder before he was fired just 14 games into 2008-09.
Also known is is that Van Gundy’s oldest daughter is in her last year of high school in Houston. He had hoped to hold off on a return to coaching until she had graduated.
Van Gundy, who last coached in the 2006-07 season that was his fourth with the Rockets after seven in New York, was extremely popular during his time with the Knicks. He took them to the playoffs in all but one season, including an NBA Finals appearance in 1999, when they fell to the San Antonio Spurs in five games.
The Nets are willing to wait until the offseason to find a new coach “if the right name is not there,” one person with knowledge … [For more on Nets must wait if they want Jeff Van Gundy as coach, click here.]