This Exists: NBA Assistant Coach Fired…Because He Wanted To Sit Behind The Bench
You can imagine an NBA assistant being fired for refusing to take what would perceived by many to be a demotion. But losing your job over volunteering for that demotion, that's just crazy, right?
Not if you're now former Denver Nuggets top assistant Adrian Dantley, who accoring to Yahoo! Sports' Kelly Dwyer, was let go by Nuggets head coach George Karl after Dantley refused to sit on the bench next to Karl, because he preferred a role that would require him to sit behind the Nuggets' bench.
Per NBA rules, teams are only allowed to sit three coaches on their bench during games, but are allowed an unlimited member of staff members/helpers behind the bench.
Karl has a policy of having the three coaches who sit on his bench rotate spots to keep things fresh, but apparently Dantley, who took over as the Nuggets' interim coach while Karl recovered from throat cancer during the 2009-10 season, wasn't thrilled about the rotation. Per Chris Tomasson at Denver Stiffs:
"I didn't rotate,'' said Dantley, an NBA star forward from 1976-2001 who was named in 2008 to the Hall of Fame." I wasn't going to rotate. If they (other assistants) want the publicity to sit up front, I don't need the publicity… I got no problem not being seen on TV and sitting at the back of the bench."
It sounds like there's more to this than just seat positioning during games, and as Tomasson points out, Dantley has been an assistant with Denver since before Karl arrived in town, and his price tag, considering he's just an assistant, was likely getting a little hefty for Denver's new ownership to afford.
But considering that Dantley's one shot at becoming a head coach resulted in a 13-12 record (including the playoffs), it'll be interesting to see where he winds up next, especially now that he apparently has demands about where he sits on on the bench. Dantley may be on his way to discovering that beggars can't be choosers.
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