Archives For JB Bickerstaff

Rumors of Bickerstaff

Benjamin Polk —  July 12, 2011 — 5 Comments

Photo by Markus P L

From Jerry Zgoda at the Star Tribune:

Last time we checked, Kurt Rambis still is Timberwolves’ coach but that isn’t stopping Davis Kahn from continuing his pursuit of a new coach apparently. On Monday, the Oregonian newspaper in Portland reported that the Wolves late last week asked the Trail Blazers for permission to talk to Blazers assistant coach Bernie Bickerstaff about the team’s still-filled head coaching job. Bickerstaff’s contract with the Blazers expired on July 1 — which is also when the current labor lockout began — but he has been negotiating with the Blazers about a new one. The idea with hiring Bickerstaff — 67 and a head coach with four different NBA teams during his long career when he also was a president and GM — would be to sign him for a year or two while his son J.B. is groomed to take over the job when he’s ready…There’s a couple other reasons this makes sense: J.B. would work cheap and he’ll take the job in an instant.And with the way this debacle has played out, that latter quality might be getting harder and harder to come by. The Wolves’ insistence at dragging this out presumably to save money just makes the franchise from around the league look  even more mismanged, if that’s possible.

I have very little to add to this.  David Kahn has shown himself to be genuinely skilled at explaining the team’s most puzzling moves (see his long conversation with Bill Simmons). But he and Glen Taylor also seem to be unable to avoid repeatedly giving the impression that their franchise is an tumultuous wreck. And, more importantly, they seem to be blithely unaware that such impressions are almost as important as the decisions themselves. Whether or not your decision to draft Jonny Flynn one spot after Ricky Rubio, say, was actually well-reasoned, it appeared amateurish and incompetent. And those appearances matter gravely.

Photo by iwouldificould

Of the many by turns illuminating and inscrutable tidbits I dug up in the past few weeks while doing research for the Truehoop post, this was among the most glaring: the Wolves’ situation on the wing is a true riddle, a strange machine, filled with moving parts and missing pieces.

Let’s start with what we’ve recently learned. Michael Beasley is the team’s most gifted scorer, but hurts the team defensively (though we’ve seen improvement in the past week), especially when partnered with his young mates in the starting lineup, Darko Milicic and Kevin Love. Wesley Johnson and Corey Brewer both have severely limited offensive games, but come with a desperately needed energy and athleticism that complements Love’s and Darko’s special talents. And although it’s too soon to know for certain how Martell Webster affects the team–and he seems to be still very much inhibited by his stiff back, particularly on defense–it’s clear that Webster brings a reliable shooting touch and what passes on this team for veteran savvy (i.e. he’s, like, played in a playoff game before). How do we figure this out?

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