Chris Paul is taking most of the blame for the Del Negro firing. But its VINNY DEL NEGRO!
The Los Angeles Clippers finally fired Vinny Del Negro—a move they should have made last season. There has been growing talk that Chris Paul and Blake Griffin were the main catalyst behind the Del Negro firing, and the media has slowly been trying to turn both players into the bad guys of the situation, but the fans must remember, it’s VINNY DEL NEGRO—one of the most inept coaches in the NBA. It’s not like they pulled a Kobe and ran off Phil Jackson.
And if you need a reminder of Vinny’s ineptitude, just take a look over at Chicago and how great the Bulls become once they fired Del Negro and replaced him with a good coach. Del Negro apologist (if they actually exist) would point to the fact that the Clippers had the best regular season in team history and made it to the second-round of the playoffs. However, last year’s Clippers team was so talented that if you replaced Del Negro with an above-average coach, the team probably makes a deep playoff run. And if you were to replace him with an elite coach, they probably make the NBA Finals at minimum. What do you think coach Pop could have done with this squad? Or even coach Spo, Rivers, Thibodeau or heaven forbid, Phil Jackson?
But enough about Del Negro—the Clippers picked the perfect time to go looking for a new coach because there are so many quality candidates on the market, and have positioned themselves to be one of the rare teams that actually upgrades after a firing (take a look at the Lakers and the D’Antoni downgrade).
Here is a quick look at the odds for the Los Angeles Clippers’ next coach. (Odds come from Bovada.lv)
LA Clippers Next Coach
Alvin Gentry: +300
Brian Shaw: +300
Lionel Hollins: +400
Byron Scott: +500
Nate McMilan: +550
Stan Van Gundy: +1000
Jeff Van Gundy: +1000
Every candidate on this list is a quality coach that would do a far better job than Del Negro ever could. Both Van Gundy brothers could lead the Clippers to an NBA Finals appearance, but no one is sure if either coach is ready to return to the NBA. The most likely choices are Brian Shaw, Lionel Hollins and Byron Scott. If Hollins does not resign with the Grizzlies, I expect him to be the Clippers next coach. But if Hollins is not on the market, expect Shaw or Scott to get the position.