The Milwaukee Bucks coaching search hasn’t been short on its big names. Though proven coaches like Stan Van Gundy and Jerry Sloan have not reacted favorably to overtures, that hasn’t stopped John Hammond and company from reaching out to others.
Per Kurt Helin of NBC Sports, as first reported by Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal-Times:
If you believe some insightful NBA officials, it’s simply because the Bucks are playing the waiting game. They are biding their time until the Memphis Grizzlies’ season ends and they can talk to Grizzlies free-agent in-waiting coach Lionel Hollins.
Hollins has amassed a 196-155 record since taking over as Grizzlies coach midway through the 08-09 season, with playoff appearances in the past three seasons. He currently has his team battling for a spot in
something other than the 2nd round The Finals. It’s hard to believe that he’d be willing to come take over a Bucks organization after building up such a strong coaching rapport.
How is this even possible, you might ask. Well, Hollins is a free-agent coach after this Grizzlies season. While it is widely expected that Memphis’ front-office will make a push to retain their coach, there is a tiny chance that Hollins hits the open market this offseason and, historically, the Bucks have not been adverse to paying coaches a lot of money to coach in Milwaukee.
The Bucks have also discussed the coaching position with current and/or ex-Hawks coach Larry Drew, former Blazers and Sonics coach Nate McMillan, assistant coach Steve Clifford (Lakers), and both Kelvin Sampson and J.B. Bickerstaff (Rockets).