Thursday , May , 31 , 2007 Oly Sandor

Memphis Grizzlies Get It Right Hiring Marc Iavaroni

Enough with bringing in stale, outdated coaches … The Memphis Grizzlies got it right annointing Marc Iavaroni, the leagues top assistant, as their new sideline boss … Read why Iavaroni will succeed as The Guy in Memphis …

Give the Memphis Grizzlies credit. They could have hired a big-name, veteran head coach, someone management would be familiar with.

After all, GMs and executives recycle coaches like pop cans, bringing in established sideline bosses regardless of their record. Right or wrong, NBA front offices have their comfort levels.

But Memphis, realizing their organization desperately needed some fresh energy, went against the grain and hired Phoenix assistant coach Marc Iavaroni.

True, Iavaroni has never been an NBA head coach. But it doesn’t matter. This isn’t such a risk. Just consider Iavaroni’s track record.

He’s always been competent and detail-orientated. Former teammate Leo Rautins mentioned to Team 1040 radio in Vancouver, B.C. that Iavaroni has always been a passionate student of basketball, taking notes from the sideline as a player.

His love for hoops and meticulous nature made him an invaluable member of Phoenix’s counter-culture coaching staff. Iavaroni was the Type-A coach, the one who would suggest conventional schemes and sets for the run-and-gun Suns to try.

And Iavaroni was largely responsible for Phoenix’s much improved defense, imploring the 2006-07 Suns to get stops.

Memphis will benefit from hiring a young coach. New ideas and forward thinking can help a stagnant organization. According to NBA gossip, Iavaroni is seen as an asistant coach who possesses all the traits to become a great head coach.

Don’t forget the Grizzlies’ last two head coaches, Hubie Brown and Mike Fratello, were established sideline bosses who failed to produce a consistent winner.

So it was time to go in a completely different direction. Someone young enough to mentor and nurture Memphis’ young players.  And surprisingly enough, the lowly Grizz made the right move.

Unfortunately, most NBA franchises still prefer the old-guard coach who wins forty games and nothing more.

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