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NY Daily News: Rockets seeking interview with Van Gundy

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by Free Agent, May 25, 2003.

  1. Free Agent

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    http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/story/86547p-78943c.html


    Rockets set to pursue Van Gundy


    By FRANK ISOLA
    DAILY NEWS SPORTS WRITER

    The Houston Rockets are expected to meet this week with Jeff Van Gundy about becoming Rudy Tomjanovich's replacement as coach, according to a league source.
    Houston must get permission from the Knicks before it can formally interview Van Gundy, who is still under contract with the team until July 31. As of late yesterday, Rockets general manager Carroll Dawson had not spoken to Knicks president Scott Layden.

    Knicks officials yesterday declined to comment on Van Gundy's status. The team did grant New Orleans, Toronto and Cleveland permission to speak with its former coach.

    According to several people familiar with the Rockets' search, Van Gundy and the 76ers' Larry Brown are the team's top two choices. Brown, however, is under contract for two more seasons.

    There are also rumors about Brown possibly returning to Denver to coach the Nuggets. Another rumor has Brown taking over the basketball operations with the Los Angeles Clippers and hiring University of Memphis coach John Calipari to coach the team.

    "The best coaches are always in demand," Houston owner Leslie Alexander said on Friday. "We'll move quickly to catch up. We want somebody who's a winner, somebody to make this team a championship team."

    Alexander's comment about catching up comes after several erroneous reports about Van Gundy having already agreed to coach the Cavaliers. Both Van Gundy and Cleveland GM Jim Paxson have categorically denied that a deal has been reached.

    Van Gundy also refused to comment yesterday about his future.

    "I can hit the ground running (in the search)," Alexander told the Houston Chronicle. "I want a guy that can take this job and hit the ground running, too. This is too good a job for a guy who has to learn how to coach with this team. My priority, after my family and my dog, is the Rockets."

    The Rockets believe that Van Gundy can turn their young team into a contender in the Western Conference. They are also aware of Van Gundy's experience with coaching big men: Van Gundy was with Patrick Ewing for the last 12 years of Ewing's career in New York.

    Houston's top two players are center Yao Ming and point guard Steve Francis.

    Van Gundy met with Cleveland owner Gordon Gund for five hours 10 days ago in New Jersey. He again spoke to Gund on Friday, one day after the Cavs won the NBA draft lottery and the rights to pick LeBron James, the high school star from Akron.

    Originally published on May 25, 2003
     
  2. B-ball freak

    B-ball freak Contributing Member
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  3. SLA

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