The Pistons are in need of a new head coach after firing Lawrence Frank on April 18th. Frank posted a poor record of 54-94 in two seasons with Detroit, which ultimately led to his firing. So that means Detroit will start the interviewing process, beginning with former Blazers and Sonics head coach, Nate McMillan. According to ESPN.com, The Pistons are scheduled to sit down with McMillan today, as he might be the favorite to land the job. Another candidate, although a long shot, would be former Pistons player and recent Phoenix Suns interim coach, Lindsey Hunter.
Nate McMillan brings experience as a head coach, having five seasons with the Seattle Sonics and seven with Portland. The last time McMillan coached in the NBA was during the 2011-12 season with Portland, before being fired mid-season. As for Lindsey Hunter, (who will be interviewed by Detroit this week) he only took over for the Suns mid-season after Alvin Gentry was fired. The Pistons will be looking for a veteran head coach most likely, who at least has head coaching experience. Hunter seems like the flashy pick, but unlikely to be hired. McMillan has been to the playoffs five times as a head coach and won a Northwest Division title with Portland in the 2008-09 season.
Whoever ends up being hired by the Pistons has some nice pieces to work with, including Greg Monroe, Andre Drummond, Brandon Knight and Kyle Singler. Joe Dumars will have money to spend in free agency also, but he doesn’t want to make the same mistake of just picking up players (Ben Gordon & Charlie Villanueva) just because you have money to spend. Detroit will also have a pretty nice lottery pick, possibly looking at a player like Trey Burke of Michigan or Otto Porter Jr. of Georgetown. The most important position the Pistons need though is at small forward, after trading Tayshaun Prince, Detroit virtually had no starting worthy player at the 3.
Joe Dumars hasn’t done a very good job of finding a quality NBA head coach after firing Flip Saunders in 2008. Apparently three strikes and you’re not out, because Pistons owner Tom Gores seems to have decided keeping Joe Dumars as President of Basketball Operations after three poor coaching decisions.
- Michael Curry 2008-09, 39-43 record
- John Keuster 2009-11, 57-107 record
- Lawrence Frank 2011-13, 54-94 record
The Detroit Pistons have potential, but need the right coach. Nate McMillan appears to be the favorite, but some other names I would look for are Kelvin Sampson, Brian Shaw and Scott Skiles. The Pistons haven’t posted a winning record since the 2007-08 season, going 59-23 and losing to the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference Finals.
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