Former Pistons HC emerges as ‘top candidate’ for Pelicans job

When the Detroit Pistons made Stan Van Gundy its new head coach in 2014, he stated that it would be his last coaching stop.

Well, it looks like he may have told a fib here.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the former Pistons’ HC will meet today with officials from the New Orleans Pelicans regarding its head coaching vacancy. Wojnarowski went on to state he has emerged as a top candidate. Van Gundy is one of four finalists for the job, on a list that also includes former Cleveland Cavaliers HC Ty Lue.

If hired, Van Gundy would inherit a young and talented Pelicans roster that is mostly known for underachieving over the past several seasons. It’s safe to surmise it was a crucial factor in the organization firing former HC Alvin Gentry on August 15th. In five season with the Pelicans, Gentry’s coaching record was 175-225, winning only 44% of his games there. Additionally, the Pelicans only had one playoff berth under Gentry as well.

Gentry’s coaching of the Pelicans was sub-par. It’s a fact. Along those same lines, so was Van Gundy’s last coaching stint.

In five seasons with the Pistons, Van Gundy had a record of 152-176. And just like Gentry, there was only one playoff appearance in his last stint.

The difference?

Gentry’s Pelicans’ made it past the first round, sweeping the Portland Trailblazers in the 2018 NBA Playoffs. The team would go on to lose 4-1 to the Golden State Warriors.

Van Gundy’s Pistons’ though?

The Cavaliers swept the Pistons in the first round in 2015. While it was his first year as Pistons HC, he could never guide them back. On May 7th, 2018, the Pistons relieved him of duties as head coach and president of basketball operations.

Should the Pelicans hire the man who famously said “Form a ******* wall,” he’ll be taking over a team featuring Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram (who’s a restricted free agent) Lonzo Ball.

Follow Kory Woods on Twitter @koryewoods

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