After a first round exit against the star-less walking infirmary that is the Chicago Bulls, the Brooklyn Nets have gone ahead and fired interim coach P.J. Carlesimo. Fire up the Phil Jackson rumor mill, it’s gonna be a long summer on Atlantic Ave.
Via ESPN: [Nets GM Billy] King, talking to reporters after the announcement, would not rule out making a push at Phil Jackson to fill the coaching vacancy and said he plans to call Jackson to gauge his level of interest.
After firing Avery Johnson early in the season, the Nets went on a 12-2 tear under the Fordham grad’s tutelage. Despite not having an offseason to do what he wanted with the team, Carlesimo did a pretty damn good job at the helm, overseeing a 10-3 run down the stretch that landed the Nets home court advantage.
Via ESPN: Nets search for a new coach has started. P.J. Carlesimo won’t be brought back. Jeff Van Gundy is a top target, sources say.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) May 5, 2013
But, like a new upscale restaurant frantically looking for the right manager, the Nets let him go the day after his staff served up what we’ll call an uninspired seven game salad. With hair in it. As Charles Barkley put it, the Nets “don’t play with a lot of passion … they just play on talent.” A direct indictment of the players willingness to give everything for their leader, and ultimately, a reflection of his ability as a coach.
After winning the first game in the series by 300,000 points, all signs indicated that Deron and company would make short work of the zombified Chicago Bulls, whose entire squad was suffering from meningitis, stomach flu, and/or apathy (ahem, Derrick Rose.) Not the case, as they went the distance, ultimately losing at home.
Here we go again. Again.
Photo via Getty