Shaw-hunting season opens
For weeks now, when other NBA teams called Pacers president Donnie Walsh for permission to talk with assistant coach Brian Shaw, the answer has been the same: wait until the playoffs are over.
Now that they’re over for the Pacers, who lost at Miami Monday evening, it took less than 24 hours for Shaw’s name to surface as a candidate for the head coaching position in Brooklyn. An ESPN.com report on Tuesday listed Shaw as a serious candidate to replace P.J. Carlesimo, who was fired after the Nets were eliminated by Chicago in seven games in the first round of the playoffs. Jeff Van Gundy and Lionel Hollins also reportedly are candidates in Brooklyn.
The Los Angeles Clippers, Detroit and Philadelphia also have head coaching openings. The Clippers and Brooklyn are considered the best opportunities because of their talent level is higher, although the Clippers are in danger of losing All-Star point guard Chris Paul, an impending free agent.
Shaw, who was an assistant with the Los Angeles Lakers before coming to the Pacers, is regarded as one of the hottest commodities among NBA assistants.
“There’s going to be a lot of teams after Brian,” Walsh said.
Shaw is a popular coach among the Pacers players because he has the practical knowledge that comes from playing 14 seasons in the NBA.
“He’s a smart coach,” Pacers forward Paul George said. “He understands how to score and how to attack and from what angles, and the spacing on the floor. He’s a good source to talk to.”
George, however, doesn’t anticipate having Shaw around to talk with for much longer.
“I’m not ready to lose B. Shaw, but it’s smart to say he probably won’t be with us next year,” George said.