Originally posted on Crossover Chronicles  |  Last updated 2/1/12

Rick Adelman is in the midst of one of the great rebuilding projects the NBA has seen. The Minnesota Timberwolves have not had a .300 win percentage since 2007. So, with the Wolves riding the coattails of Kevin Love and Ricky Rubio to a 10-11 record, Adelman is understandably looking to the future.

That is, except when he made his first return to coach at Toyota Center since the Rockets let him leave last year. Adelman was somewhat unceremoniously let go this offseason after consistently getting the Rockets into the Playoff hunt but not into the Playoffs all without Yao Ming for the most part. Adelman was upset with ownership whom he believed did not communicate with him enough as the end drew near, as David Dalati of FSHouston writes:

"The current coach of the Minnesota Timberwolves indicated that he was aggravated by a report this summer which claimed Rockets owner Les Alexander had periodic phone conversations with Adelman, who coached the Rockets from 2007-11, compiling a 193-135 record with two playoff appearances in four seasons.

"When asked about his current relationship with Alexander, Adelman replied, 'I'm still waiting for that phone call he said he made to me every year because I never got one. I don't know where that came from, unless he was calling another Rick.'

"While Alexander was not quoted about how often he communicated with Adelman in the Houston Chronicle report, the story claimed that Alexander would 'phone (Jeff) Van Gundy (Adelman's predecessor in Houston) and Adelman three or four times a season.' The story added that Van Gundy and Adelman 'chose to have virtually no relationship with their boss.'

"Asked to expound, Adelman said he was making light of the report but went on to explain: '(Alexander) said he used to call me three or four times a year and I just . . . it never happened. When you leave a place, there's reasons why you leave. There's reasons why you're not there.

"'I chose not to accept an extension that they offered me. I saw all this stuff about how I never listened to him. I'm not real smart, but I'm going to listen to my boss. That just kind of turned me the wrong way, but this was a great place to work and I had a lot of fun.'"

Ah, it is always good to have bad blood between a coach and his former team. The Rockets did not comment on Adelman's comments.

Adelman had the last laugh Monday night as his Timberwolves scored a 120-108 victory at Toyota Center behind Love's 29 points and a 42-point third quarter. It was an onslaught between two teams that are in the bottom of the Playoff hunt in the early part of the season.

Still, Adelman going off on the Rockets organization, whom he said he has mostly fond memories, was somewhat out of left field. Adelman, after all, went 193-135 including two 50-win seasons and that trip to the conference semifinals when Yao Ming broke his foot and began the beginning of the end in 2009. Adelman's teams failed to make the Playoffs the next two years despite having 42 and 43 wins those seasons.

Rarely do coaches get the chance to walk away on their own terms. Clearly something was going on within the organization that made Adelman more willing to leave, or better, not to come back.

So far, it seems Kevin McHale (a former coach at Minnesota, ironically) has his team playing at about the same level as Adelman. Even though they are 12-9, most people expect the Rockets to finish somewhere near .500 and in contention for the Playoffs. In other words, the mediocrity every team's fans fear. At least, it seems, the Wolves have a very bright future.

[follow]

MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
Best basketball players never to play in the NBA
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

‘Field of Dreams’ 24-diamond complex clears final hurdle, will build on site from film

Dorial Green-Beckham fined for wearing non-charity Yeezy cleats

Chargers GM won’t commit to Mike McCoy’s return in 2017

Report: Police close to arresting Matt Barnes for alleged assault

Carmelo: Cryptic Instagram posts were about Phil Jackson

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

DeMarcus Cousins trade rumors won’t go away

NFL folks think Jabrill Peppers ‘more hype than substance'?

Joe Haden: Winless Browns the 'laughingstock of every joke’

Did Del Rio give Reid the stink eye after Thursday’s game?

Lane Kiffin reportedly believed Houston job was his

Harbaugh stands by claim Pats broke rules in 2015 playoff game

Winners, losers and what is still pending from baseball's 2016 Winter Meetings

Why UCLA's Lonzo Ball is the most interesting player in college hoops

The NBA goes courtside to curbside: Drinks and rides for discerning fans

The best (and worst) times athletes hosted 'SNL'

CFB Crash Course, Graduation: Final grades and awards

NHL All-Star Game fans are in search of another John Scott

Box Score 12/9: Carey Price has had enough of your nonsense

MLB Winter Meetings, Day 4: News, notes and rumors

Matt Ryan is now Mr. Pick-Two

Ten most significant developments of the NBA season

Sporting life: Gifts for the fan who is always on point

MLB Winter Meetings report, Day 3: News, notes and rumors

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Winners, losers and what is still pending from the 2016 Winter Meetings

Why UCLA's Lonzo Ball is the most interesting player in college hoops

The NBA goes courtside to curbside: Drinks and rides for discerning fans

CFB Crash Course, Graduation: Final grades and awards

The five best (and worst) times athletes hosted 'SNL'

NHL All-Star Game fans are in search of another John Scott

Sporting life: Gifts for the fan who is always on point

Matt Ryan is now Mr. Pick-Two

MLB Winter Meetings, Day 4: News, notes and rumors

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker