Well, it’s practically officially: Kiki Vandeweghe will be the next head coach for the Nets, taking longtime coaching veteran Del Harris as his assistant, according to ESPN’s Marc Stein. The Nets will formally announce this sometime on Tuesday, according to the report.
Vandeweghe, the current Nets GM who has no prior coaching experience, reportedly didn’t want to take the position without a season veteran coach on the bench to assist him. That’s where Del Harris comes in, who was named coached of the year in 1995 while in Los Angeles, and also has head coaching experience in Milwaukee and Houston. Last season, he served as an assistant coach/mentor to Vinny Del Negro in Chicago.
Assistant Tom Barrise, will likely coach Wednesday’s game at home against the Mavericks, according to Stein. Kiki’s first game will probably come Friday against Charlotte (hey, nice timing… a team the Nets could beat).
Personally, I’m glad the Nets went in this direction. Yes, Kiki has no coaching experience whatsoever, but I think a team that is in shambles like the Nets are right now, needs a new voice. Promoting one of the assistants would be rearranging the deck chairs on a sinking ship. Obviously, there’s no guarantees that Kiki will do any better than the current Nets assistants, but at the bare minimum, he’ll get to utilize the talent he assembled for the roster the way he envisioned it while acquiring these players.