By Spike Eskin
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Now that they’re the only team left with a head coaching vacancy, Orlando Summer League is over, and training camp doesn’t start for months, the Sixers can really take their time with their search for a head coach.
General manager Sam Hinkie said his first priority was the draft, and the major trade of Jrue Holiday, along with several second round trades showed he wasn’t kidding. The Sixers have been quiet in free agency, putting waivers claims in on two former Houston Rockets players, as well as a trade with the Rockets for 2012 first round pick Royce White and Turkish forward Furkan Aldemir. Now, it’s time to find a head coach.
According to a report from ESPN, the Sixers have received permission to interview Bulls assistant coaches Ed Pinckney and Adrian Griffin, and according to a report from Yahoo! Sports, the Sixers will also interview Heat assistant coach David Fizdale, a name that surfaced much earlier in the search, as well as Kenny Atkinson and Quin Snyder.
If there was no rush to hire a coach before, there would seem to be even less reason to hurry now. The Sixers are not competing with other teams for any coach’s services, and the coach won’t be working with the players for quite a while.
Yahoo reports that the Sixers met with Boston Celtics assistant coach Jay Larranaga on Tuesday.
Fizdale is a well respected name in the NBA, and also serves as the Miami Heat director of player development. He’s been with the Heat since 2008, and has been an assistant in the league for a decade. He’s said to be very good in relating to and communicating with players.
Griffin has served as an assistant coach with the Bulls since 2010, and spent 2008-2010 with the Bucks.
Ed Pinckney has also been with the Bulls since 2010, and has been an NBA assistant coach since 2007. Pinckney was a a key player in Villanova’s 1985 National Championship team, winning the tournament’s most outstanding player award. He also served as an assistant coach for Villanova from 2003-2007.
Kenny Atkinson is an assistant coach with the Atlanta Hawks, and worked with Hinkie in Houston where he was director of player development.
Quin Synder spent 2013 as an assistant coach with the Atlanta Hawks. He worked with the Sixers in 2010 and 2011 in player development.