Pelicans to Interview Alvin Gentry for Head Coaching Position


Alvin Gentry will be a name on many coaching candidate lists around the league this summer, and the Pelicans will be no different.

On Monday afternoon, Marc Stein of ESPN reported that New Orleans has been granted permission by the Warriors to interview Gentry, who is currently working as an assistant on Steve Kerr’s bench.

The Warriors are getting ready for their Western Conference Finals against the Houston Rockets, so the date Gentry would meet with the Pelicans brass is still unknown.

He has played a huge part in getting the Warriors to where they are right now.

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His influence on the Golden State offense has helped it become one of, if not the most feared offense in the NBA. Getting a team to this level in only one season on the bench is a credit to not only Gentry, but to the entire staff Kerr has put together.

October 29, 2014; Sacramento, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors associate head coach Alvin Gentry reacts during the third quarter against the Sacramento Kings at Sleep Train Arena. The Warriors defeated the Kings 95-77. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

That sort of instant success will likely make the decision to leave a tough one.

The Warriors are going to be a title contender for years to come, and Gentry may not want to give up the opportunity to be a part of that.

When Tim Kawakami of asked Gentry if he would pursue a head coaching position in the offseason, Gentry made this thought process a reality, saying “It would have to be a special situation for me to leave here.”

And who can blame him? The Warriors are currently favorites to win the NBA championship, and even if they fall short their 67 win regular season ranks among the best seasons in league history.

Fortunately for New Orleans, coaching Anthony Davis and the Pelicans may be “special” enough to make Gentry consider.

As opposed to the defensive specialist and fellow candidate Tom Thibodeau, Gentry makes his living on the offensive end.

He is responsible for setting up the Warriors offense on pretty much an every game basis, and had similar success as a head coach, particularly in Phoenix.

The Gentry lead Suns made the Western Conference Finals in 2010, only to fall to the Los Angeles Lakers.

While the blazing pace of Mike D’Antoni’s teams had departed with the former head coach, a lot of what made that system successful was implemented by Gentry when he took over.

That 2009-10 roster led the league in offensive efficiency that year, and it was not even close. Steve Nash and Amar’e Stoudemire were a potent one-two punch on that team, producing scorching numbers that may never be matched.

With that said, this Pelicans team is no stranger to getting the ball in the basket.

They were a top ten team all season in offensive efficiency this year, even though that may be hard to believe for some fans.

In the right hands, this roster could definitely make its scoring ability known. Anthony Davis, Eric Gordon, Jrue Holiday, Tyreke Evans and Ryan Anderson are all capable of carrying an offensive workload.

If Gentry manages to blend their abilities like he has helped do in Golden State, New Orleans may become unstoppable.

The main distinction between the success of this past Pelicans team and the 09-10 Suns is pace.

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The Suns got their shots off quickly, usually within the first twelve seconds of the shot clock. More often than not, the Monty Williams led Pelicans would drain most of if not all of the shot clock on every possession.

If Gentry were to become head coach not only would he have to implement his offensive system, but he will have to make sure that the Pelicans will be able to play at the desired pace.

Technique and execution are important, but neither is possible without the proper stamina.

If Alvin Gentry decides the Pelicans are “special” enough for him, the fans in both New Orleans and the rest of the country may be in store for a high-paced, scoreboard busting treat…..

Next: Possible Candidates for Next Pelicans Coach