Steinmetz: Warriors poised to move soon on coach?


Steinmetz: Warriors poised to move soon on coach?


Warriors owner Joe Lacob and general manager Larry Riley made it clear in late April that there was no timetable for naming a new coach. Both went so far as to suggest it wasn't even necessary for the Warriors to find a coach by the NBA's draft in late June.But that was then.Things have changed some. The reality is that if Lacob and Riley have a man in mind to replace Keith Smart, they might want to get a move on.Why?RELATED: 13 potential replacements for Keith Smart
Because there are too many coaching vacancies out there -- and possibly more to come - and perhaps not enough A-list coaches available.As of now, there are coaching vacancies in Golden State, Houston, Indiana and with the L.A. Lakers. But there could be more movement in the coming weeks.It is certainly possible that Detroit's John Kuester will be let go once an ownership change takes place for the Pistons. That deal is expected to close by the end of May.There are also plenty of questions in Toronto, where general manager Brian Colangelo has yet to have his contracted extended -- and it expires on June 30. So, as you would figure, there's no assurance that coach Jay Triano will return.And don't forget Minnesota, where there remains a chance that Kurt Rambis will be fired.Obviously, the Warriors have a head start in the selection process over those teams, and it might be something they want to stay ahead of. It only makes sense that the more jobs that are out there, the less the chances the Warriors stand of getting their man.It has been reported that the Warriors either have interviewed or will interview Dallas assistant Dwane Casey, former Cleveland Cavaliers coach Mike Brown and current Lakers assistant Brian Shaw.RELATED: Warriors get permission to talk with Lakers' Shaw
The Warriors were also said to be interested in gauging the interest of former Jazz coach Jerry Sloan and former Knicks and Rockets coach Jeff Van Gundy. It is unknown whether the Warriors have spoken to either or whether either would be interested in the job.Rick Adelman, who was recently let go in Houston, may be on the Lakers' radar when it comes to replacing Phil Jackson. Of course, that would free up Shaw, considered L.A.'s lead candidate at this point.Shaw would likely draw interest from the Pacers, where Larry Bird is president of basketball operations. Shaw and Bird have a history from their playing days with the Boston Celtics in the late 1980s and early 1990s.Shaw had discussions with Indiana back in 2007, but the Pacers hired Jim O'Brien. Indiana is also said to be interested in Casey and Brown.Houston reportedly is to down to three finalists: Former Nets head coach and current Boston assistant Lawrence Frank, former Timberwolves head coach Kevin McHale and Casey.As you can see, some of the same candidates are in the mix for different positions. In other words, maybe there is a sense of urgency -- not just for the Warriors but for any team with a vacancy.NEWS: Jackson leaves Lakers for adventures beyond L.A.
Allowing a candidate to emerge during the interview process might now be a risky strategy for a team, particularly when that guy may be under consideration elsewhere. Teams might want to identify their man quickly and go after him decisively.After all, if they don't, some other team probably will.

Jazz hold off Clippers in Game 5, take 3-2 series lead

Jazz hold off Clippers in Game 5, take 3-2 series lead


LOS ANGELES -- Gordon Hayward scored 27 points, Utah controlled the paint, and the Jazz beat the Los Angeles Clippers 96-92 on Tuesday night to take a 3-2 lead in their first-round playoff series.

Hayward returned after missing most of Utah's win in Game 4 because of food poisoning that caused him to lose weight and energy.

Chris Paul's 3-pointer drew the Clippers within two with 5 seconds left. After George Hill hit two free throws, Paul struggled getting the ball under control near the sideline and couldn't do anything as time expired.

The Jazz made five 3-pointers in the fourth quarter, including three by Rodney Hood, who finished with 16 points.

Paul led the Clippers with 28 points and J.J. Redick added 26 with injured star Blake Griffin watching from the bench, his right foot encased in a black walking boot.

The Jazz can clinch the series with a victory in Game 6 on Friday night in Salt Lake City.

The Clippers rallied from an 11-point deficit early in the fourth to tie the game. They made 12 of 15 free throws in the final period, but never managed to take the lead.

Paul and Hayward were called for double technical fouls with 40 seconds to go. Paul had already pushed Hayward in the back after they got tied up scrambling for a rebound in front of Utah's bench. Hayward made both shots for a 90-85 lead.

Joe Johnson's step back jumper extended Utah's lead to 92-87.

Neither team shot well, but the Jazz were better at most everything else. They owned a 34-28 edge in the paint, and the team that has done so has won each of the first five games in the best-of-7 series.

Utah outscored the Clippers on second-chance and fast-break baskets.

Utah took the game's first double-digit lead early in the fourth on a 3-pointer by Hood that made it 69-58.

The Clippers clawed back with an 11-0 run featuring five straight free throws by Redick and two consecutive 3-pointers from Paul that tied the game at 69-all.

Suddenly, the quiet crowd was on its feet cheering and Utah called time out.

The Jazz regrouped to take a 77-69 lead. They ran off eight straight, capped by Haywood's 3-pointer after the Clippers' defense shut down Hill inside and forced him to pass out to the perimeter with the shot clock winding down.

Jazz: Neither team has won by more than eight points so far in the series.

Clippers: Griffin's injured big right toe needs further evaluation before it's decided whether he'll require surgery. ... G Austin Rivers played 17 minutes in his return from a strained left hamstring. He was 0 of 4 and had two points. ... They fell to 1-11 all-time in Game 5 of a playoff series that was tied 2-2.


Blazers GM: Former Warriors big man will not play for Portland next year

Blazers GM: Former Warriors big man will not play for Portland next year

Festus Ezeli will not be back with the Blazers next season, Portland GM Neil Olshey said on Tuesday.

Last summer -- after the Warriors let Ezeli walk in free agency following the addition of Kevin Durant -- he signed a 2-year contract worth just over $15 million.

But Year 2 was essentially a club option with a $1 million buyout.

A knee injury prevented Ezeli from ever suiting up for the Blazers this season.

He underwent cadaver ligament replacement surgery in early March.

The Warriors drafted Ezeli 30th overall in 2012.

Over 46 games (13 starts) with Golden State in 2015-16, he averaged 7.0 points and 5.6 rebounds over 16.7 minutes per contest.