Sixers' coach Jordan fired after one year
PHILADELPHIA — Samuel Dalembert has become numb to the coaching changes. In and out of Philadelphia they shuffle, taking with them various philosophies that were scrapped almost as soon as the 76ers learned the playbook. His next coach will be his eighth in 10 seasons with the team.
Philly's coaching carousel has become a punchline around the NBA.
"When I tell guys around the league, they laugh at me," Dalembert said.
Eddie Jordan is the latest coach fired by an organization that can't find the right mix of players or the right coach to contend for NBA championships. Jordan and his maligned Princeton offense were given all of one season to make it work.
One year in Philadelphia is like lasting through a multi-year deal with other organizations.
Since Larry Brown left in 2003, four other coaches have failed to coach more than 82 games for the organization. Jordan's dismissal means a second straight offseason of a coaching search.
Unlike last season, there are no guarantees that team president and general manager Ed Stefanski will lead the process. He took all the questions at yesterday's press conference — Comcast-Spectacor chairman Ed Snider and chief operating officer Peter Luukko were absent — and said he intended to be the point man for the interviews.
If he gets that chance.
"We're going to evaluate the organization as a whole structurally and we'll go from there," Luukko said by phone.
When asked if he trusted Stefanski to hire the next coach, Luukko stood by that comment.
INTERIM COACH HUGHES FIRED
The Los Angeles Clippers wasted no time making their first offseason change, firing interim head coach Kim Hughes yesterday in the team's third major shake-up in 2 1/2 months.
The team said on its Web site that Hughes had been dismissed and the search for a new coach was already under way, although there were no leading candidates.
Hughes took over as interim coach for Mike Dunleavy on Feb. 4 after seven seasons as an assistant and went 8-25 the rest of the way.
The Clippers finished with a 29-53 record, missing the playoffs for the 15th time in 17 years.
JACKSON FINED $35,000
Los Angeles Lakers coach Phil Jackson has been fined $35,000 by the NBA for criticizing officials earlier this week.
The fine announced yesterday was for comments Jackson made after the Lakers' win against Sacramento on Tuesday night.
It marked the second time this month Jackson was fined for criticizing game officials. He was previously penalized the same amount for comments after a loss to San Antonio on April 4.
Grizzlies: Memphis coach Lionel Hollins has agreed to a new three-year contract with the team. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Hollins made the announcement yesterday after he talked to owner Michael Heisley earlier in the day and finalized the deal.
Pistons: Joe Dumars, Detroit's head of basketball operations, said John Kuester will be back to coach the team next season. Detroit won its final game of the season Wednesday to finish with a 27-55 record in Kuester's first year as an NBA coach. The Pistons missed the playoffs for the first time since 2001.