Dave Joerger to the Minnesota Timberwolves?
Could former Sioux Falls Skyforce and current Memphis Grizzlies head coach Dave Joerger be the next Minnesota Timberwolves coach?
Joerger led the Grizzlies to the playoffs in his first season on the job, but fell short losing to Oklahoma City in the first round. He took over in Memphis after Lionel Hollins was fired after the 2013 postseason.
After an early exit from the 2014 NBA playoffs, the Timberwolves have reportedly received permission from Memphis to talk to Joerger about their vacant coaching position.
Why might Joerger fit?
He has ties to the Midwest. He went to college at Minnesota-State Moorhead, grew up in Staples, Minnesota, and has coached the Dakota Wizards (1997-2004, 2006-2007 as part of the CBA, IBA, and NBADL) and Sioux Falls Skyforce (2004-2006 as part of the CBA). He won the 2004-2005 CBA championship with the Skyforce as well.
The future is uncertain again in Memphis. The Grizzlies fired their CEO Jason Levien, and assistant general manager Stu Lash. General Manager Chris Wallace, and Vice President of Basketball Operations John Hollinger were retained along with Joerger.
What does this mean?
Two seasons of making the postseason (made Western Conference in 2013, and first round exit in 2014) usually equates to staying power in a team’s leadership pyramid. Joerger could see this an opportunity to join forces with Flip Saunders again, as he has strong ties with Minnesota’s President of Basketball Operations.
However, do the Timberwolves need a slam dunk hire to keep Kevin Love around? Yes, Joerger made the NBA playoffs in his first season, but Rick Adelman had postseason experience, too (led Sacramento to eight playoff berths, Houston one).
Former Toronto Raptors head coach Sam Mitchell is also reportedly a ‘serious’ candidate for Minnesota’s head coaching job.
*For comments, or story ideas, email Sam at firstname.lastname@example.org, and follow him on Twitter @samtastad.