With PJ Carlesimo out, the Nets now turn to finding a new permanent head coach. Here are some of our suggestions, thanks to The Brooklyn Game team.
Houston Rockets assistant coach Kelvin Sampson has come up as a "significant" candidate for the head coaching job, according to Adrian Wojnarowski:
Nets general manager Billy King is intrigued with Sampson, among other candidates, and is expected to eventually speak with him, sources said.
Sampson has elevated his stature as a head-coaching candidate as the top assistant for Kevin McHale in Houston. When McHale left the team early this season to tend to his ailing daughter, Sampson led the Rockets to a 7-6 record that triggered a spurt that has Houston at 16-12 and in sixth place in the Western Conference.
Houston officials praise Sampson's ability to connect with star players, something he cultivated spending several months with Gregg Popovich and the San Antonio Spurs and under McHale in Houston. McHale gives Sampson significant freedom on the offensive and defensive ends to implement the Rockets' style of play.
In his farewell to Brooklyn Nets basketball, now-former Nets coach Avery Johnson spoke honestly about his tenure with the Nets organization, acknowledging that the move caught him off guard and that he wanted more time with the roster.
"This is ownership's decision," Johnson said in a 17-minute press conference. "This is part of our business. Fair or unfair, it doesn't matter.
"It's not easy to always explain," Johnson continued when asked why. "You'll have to ask (Nets owner) Mikhail (Prokhorov) what his rationale is. ... If somebody else thinks maybe we should be 24-4, that's their opinion, and if I have to pay the price for that, that's the way the business is."
Johnson thanked many members of the organization for the opportunity to work with them, including ownership, management, coaching staff, and player personnel, but seemed to leave with a bitter taste in his mouth... MORE →
The Brooklyn Nets have fired coach Avery Johnson, league source tells Yahoo! Sports.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) December 27, 2012
The Brooklyn Nets have relieved Avery Johnson of his head coaching duties, Nets GM Billy King announced.
— Nets PR Dept. (@Nets_PR) December 27, 2012
Johnson was named the NBA's Coach of the Month for November, after leading the Nets to an 11-4 start, their best in franchise history. The team has gone 3-10 since in December, most recently losing 108-93 to the Milwaukee Bucks.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski, P.J. Carlesimo will be named the team's interim coach. Billy King will officially address the situation at 4 P.M. today.
And here we go.