Posted June 03, 2013

Report: Lionel Hollins ‘likely done’ as head coach of Memphis Grizzlies

NBA
(Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins, whose contract expires on June 30, reportedly got into a confrontation with management over organizational philosophy during the playoffs. (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

[Update: 5:30 p.m.] Lionel Hollins is “likely done” as the Grizzlies’ head coach, Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski is reporting.

The coach has been at conflict with management over the use of analytics in running the organization, leading to a confrontation with vice president of basketball operations John Hollinger during the playoffs.

From the report:

Management wants a coach willing to buy into the analytic movement, using those mechanisms to make roster, lineup and system decisions. Hollins has resented what he considers undue interference by management, and has stood by his track record and success in maintaining productivity with a roster of diverse and difficult personalities.

During the Grizzlies’ playoff run, tensions turned to a confrontation when Hollins exploded during a practice session upon finding Hollinger had walked onto the practice court and engaged forward Austin Daye during a shooting drill, multiple sources told Yahoo! Sports.

With the team watching – and with a motive to show his players that he was completely in charge on the floor, sources said – Hollins loudly questioned Hollinger about what he was doing, and why he believed it was appropriate for a management official to intrude on what’s considered sacred territory for a coach and team, sources said.

[Original: 3:58 p.m.] The Memphis Grizzlies have given head coach Lionel Hollins, whose contract expires on June 30, permission to talk to other teams, according to Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski.

Talks between Hollins and the team “have been ongoing for several days, but stalled on Saturday night,” Wojnarowski is reporting.

Hollins, 59, took over the Grizzlies in the middle of the 2008-09 season and has posted a 183-155 record since, including four straight 40-plus win seasons and 56 wins this year.

He has expressed a desire to stay in Memphis and for the team to act quickly in resolving his contract situation, but reportedly has had “major philosophical differences” with the team.

[MAHONEY: Offseason Outline: Memphis Grizzlies]

The Clippers and Nets have both been linked to Hollins, who is one of Brooklyn’s top two candidates, according to Wojnarowski.


6 comments
6marK6
6marK6

This is the classic argument, did the Grizz do what they did because of Hollins or did they do what they did despite Hollins. I think management feels they gave him a championship caliber team and he failed to deliver. I think he needed to beat the Spurs to prove himself to ownership, he obviously failed in that task.

sarahsupreme
sarahsupreme

Hollins is a terrible coach.  One of the most glaring flaws is how his team takes so long to get into their offense, often initiating it with something like 10 seconds left on the shot clock.  This leads to much lower offensive efficiency.  Other NBA teams now roll the ball upcourt whenever possible to save those precious seconds but you won't see Memphis do anything so clever.  Great defensive roster, but have never seen smart adjustments from Hollins.  Also, from his blowing up at Jerryd Bayless in G4 over something that was clearly Mike Conley's fault, you can see that he plays favorites and loses the respect of his team.

geoAZ
geoAZ

How do the J-E-T-S buy into this intrigue, you get a 5'5" dork who's never dribbled a ball in his life, who applies basic statistics and he makes changes over a NBA player and successful coach...Woody pick up the phone and make the call, don't let Memphis "outstupid" you !!!

Sportsfan18
Sportsfan18

There needs to be a mix of the two...  I may not speak for the Griz and their numbers, but there are teams where certain groups of players play much better together, plus/minus as a group yet they are rarely played together by the coach.  The info, the numbers at least have to be gathered, analyzed and looked at.  Common sense must prevail, but there are teams looking at things like the shooting percentage of long two point shots and they know it's low.  They see that some of their players take way too many, a much higher percentage of two point shots, and they use this info to instruct their player(s) so they may make better decisions with the ball while on the floor.  For instance, the corner 3 point shot is the highest 3 point shot out there and some teams use this info to run plays to ensure a large percentage of their 3 point shots come from there vs. other areas...

metalkiwis
metalkiwis

@Sportsfan18 Plus/minus is a pretty bad stat. There are too many variables for it to be consistent, even the adjusted models. A good coach will find and use his best lineups. The corner three is more of a universal thing, even though you still need to create the shot for your shooter. Advanced basketball stats can be useful in context, but they are not as good as the advanced stats in baseball. They have a long way to go and they hardly account for defense. There are a few decent ones, but with only five players on the court at a time, chemistry of how the players play together matters in a big way too.