The Clippers are said to be very interested in Stan Van Gundy
The feel good Los Angeles Clippers have suddenly turned into a soap opera. Just a few days ago the LA Times reported that the Clips dynamic big men, Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan were bickering at each other and showing their immaturity. Now, reports are surfacing out of Clipperland that the team is very intrigued with Stan Van Gundy’s availability.
Via ESPN/Mark Stein:
Vinny Del Negro insisted before a recent loss in Dallas that he has “a great future no matter what.” The signals are nonetheless getting louder and louder that said future won’t be at Staples Center, with Del Negro working on a flimsy one-year extension and L.A. looking nothing like the team — whether that’s due to health woes, locker-room fissures or coaching issues — that won 17 straight games in December.
Could a deep playoff run save him? Even that might not be enough entering the most critical summer in the Clippers’ history, with Chris Paul becoming a free agent July 1 and Clips management having always planned to let Paul have a big say (assuming he wants one) before any coach gets another long-term deal from them.
The Clippers’ many injuries this season have to be factored into any evaluation of Del Negro. Seeing so little of Chauncey Billups, in particular, has really held them back, scuttling the plan to give Paul more of the time playing off the ball he relishes and robbing L.A. of its most proven playoff performer.
But Del Negro’s well-chronicled desire for the Clips to trade for Boston’s Kevin Garnett in February, coupled with his bosses’ well-chronicled reluctance to part with both Eric Bledsoe and DeAndre Jordan in a KG deal, has spawned the impression of competing agendas behind closed doors in Clipperland. It’s also undeniably worrisome for Del Negro that, according to sources, Stan Van Gundy’s availability already has the Clippers highly intrigued.
Of course the Clippers couldn’t put together one feel good season without some drama. The long-time franchise that has experienced some of the worst seasons in all of sports and seemingly coming apart at the wrong time. The Clippers just won its 50th game which is a huge achievement for a franchise that’s been routinely mocked and ridiculed. As a hoops fan, I’m hoping they can get it together for a deep run in the playoffs. Then again, this is the Clippers and would anyone be surprised if they were knocked out in the first round and Chris Paul subsequently hightailed it out of L.A. this summer?
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