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Monday, 12 May 2014 13:27

Why is Steve Kerr so wanted?

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How has Steve Kerr, with no coaching experience, been the biggest name as far as the head man for several NBA franchises...

How many, at the beginning of our working career, went to an interview and were told “you do not have enough experience”? Well, in the National Basketball Association those words are definitely not being spoken when it comes to Steve Kerr, and my only thought is… why?

By all means, Kerr seems to be a likeable person; he had a great teacher in Phil Jackson, and is well known because of his current job as an analyst on TNT. But when it comes to working inside a NBA franchise his only stint was as a general manager for the Phoenix Suns, and it was not like he set the world on fire in his tenure.

So, how is it that not one, not two, but three franchises have been trying to lure him away from his television gig and become their head coach? I understand the New York Knicks, with Jackson as his boss, the connection is there. A selling point to any big time free agent could be “if you are not going to get Phil Jackson the next best thing is to get one of his pupils”. My only thought about that is... Jackson was a great coach, but who knows what he will be like in the front office, just like who knows what Kerr will be like as a coach.

However all of that would be the reason why the next team shouldn’t want him. And yet it seems that the Los Angeles Lakers are also interested in the services of the television broadcaster. For a franchise that closed the door on Jackson a few years back to then want to bring in Kerr, who you would have to believe would lean on his mentor in the hard times, just makes no sense. On the other hand, once the patriarch of the Buss family passed away not many things make sense when it comes to the Lakers. To be fair, it seems like the LA franchise is going to take a look at half the coaches in the NBA and the NCAA from the sounds of it.

The Golden State Warriors are increasingly pessimistic about their chances of convincing Steve Kerr to turn down the New York Knicks in favor of Golden State's coaching job, according to sources close to the process.

Finally, the third squad that was looking at the 48 year old is the Golden State Warriors, but it seems that Kerr has basically said no to this job offer. So basically, in a league that has had the trade mark that they always recycle their coaches, someone with no experience on the bench had some very big time franchises looking at him. Sure, both the Knicks and the Lakers are not anything powerful right now, but the markets are as strong as you can have and not having pressure to win right away is not a bad thing for a rookie head man.

Having said all of this, for both the Knicks and the Lakers, would hiring someone like Kerr be the right move in the end? Even with front office people like Jackson in the Big Apple and Mitch Kupchak in Tinsel Town will big time free agents be willing to trust a young coach? Only time will tell, but with all of the publicity on the TNT analyst it feels like the reality might not live up to the hype that he has had.

The last thing that has to be taken into consideration, with Carmelo Anthony being on the fence of leaving or not and Kobe Bryant being in the last years of his Hall of Fame career, will either of them have any say on who the new coach for their teams will be? With the answer probably being yes, is this the reason why it’s taken so long for an answer to come out of NYC? Or is it because Kerr himself is still weighing his options from the franchises on opposite coasts.

With the post season still in the second round, the draft coming up after that, Steve Kerr has taken a lot of headlines, and this could be the first time that a rookie coach has been such a hot commodity. The question now will become, was all of this warranted, and will he be the type of coach that so many franchises believe he can. We will find out soon enough, just unsure on what side of the U.S. we will have to look at to see him coaching.

Alex Mazzolini

Follow me on twitter

 

CLNS Radio's featured NCAA Football & Basketball columnist.

 

Host of "The ABC's of the ACC" and "Pushing the Envelope" podcasts.

 

Following college sports for over a third of a century, covering not just the games, but also the recruiting, of the super conferences.

 

When it comes to college athletics I love the present day as social media gives us so much information. However, I long for the old days when college sport was more about the programs the young men played at and less about where they would end up at the next level.

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