When the Golden State Warriors fired Mark Jackson, they probably thought they would be the hottest attraction around the league for unemployed coaches.
As it turns out, it appears that they might miss out on their top two choices: Stan Van Gundy and Steve Kerr.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, Van Gundy is in serious talks with the Pistons to become their next head coach and assume complete control of basketball operations, something the Warriors were not willing to give up. The Warriors met with Van Gundy on Monday, and left convinced he was going to Detroit, Wojnarowski reports.
Per Tim Kawikami of the San Jose Mercury News, Van Gundy asked for control of basketball operations with the Warriors, obviously knowing that the Pistons would give him the same offer. The Warriors declined, and Van Gundy bolted to Detroit.
For the past week or so, Van Gundy appeared to be the frontrunner for the Warriors job, and the Warriors likewise had him atop their list of prospective coaches. A betting man would have guessed that he would be Jackson’s successor, but the Pistons jumped in. There’s also the money issue; Van Gundy and the Pistons are discussing a five-year, $35 million deal, according to Wojnarowski. Perhaps the Warriors would be able to match that offer, but it’s a lot of money for a coach.
Now, the Warriors’ options are dwindling. They are making a last-ditch effort to land Kerr, as Wojnarowski reports that the Warriors’ brass — including Joe Lacob, Bob Myers, and Kirk Lacob — is traveling to Oklahoma City today to meet with Kerr, who is broadcasting a playoff game for TNT. Kerr has not yet inked a deal with the Knicks, but it has been presumed that he will coach in New York.
But stranger things have happened. Detroit jumped in at the last-minute and snatched Kerr away from the Warriors, and they may have to do the same to the Knicks to grab Kerr.