As expected, it appears as though Rick Adelman will not be the Timberwolves’ head coach for the 2014-15 season.
Despite rampant speculation to this end, it was first reported by someone citing a source by Sid Hartman in today’s Star Tribune. It comes as no surprise, of course, given a number of factors: Adelman’s age (68 by next season), his wife’s health (he missed time in 2012-13 due to unexpected seizures), the disappointing nature of the Wolves’ season (finishing 40-42 with the 10th-best point differential in the league and missing the playoffs), and the mutual option in his contract.
In scrolling through rumors and report across the interwebs, one will come across a pile of names that will be rumored to coach next year’s edition of the Wolves. Those names include but are absolutely not limited to: George Karl, Tom Izzo, Fred Hoiberg, Lionel Hollins, and Flip Saunders himself.
The attractiveness of the job is, of course, the ability to win immediately. If the team duplicates this season’s performance in terms of point differential, they’ll make the playoffs next year. There is a legitimate superstar entering his prime in Kevin Love, and a budding, borderline star in Ricky Rubio that can only improve.
On the other hand, Love could bolt after one year, leaving an older, veteran coach such as Karl in a tough and suddenly significantly less desirable situation heading into 2015-16. And an established college coach, like Izzo or even Hoiberg, would have a tough time leaving a cushy, successful, powerhouse college program for the doldrums of a starless team from the Upper Midwest.
There is plenty of time to speculate and evaluate potential coaching options, and it’ll be an exciting journey, as every off-season seems to be for the Wolves. But for now, take everything you hear on that front with many, many grains of salt.