Monday , Aug , 27 , 2007 Oly Sandor

Why Don Nelson Will Stay With Golden State Warriors

He knows there are whispers about how he left Golden State in 1994 and Dallas in 2005. To leave the Warriors a second time, in a public squabble over money, would validate those whispers about his personality quirks …

Sean Deveney, of Sporting News, offers an opinion on Don Nelson’s future:

Chances of Nelson quitting are slim. In fact, expect him to get what he wants in the end. The Warriors are scheduled to pay him a bit more than $3 million per year for the next two years, with $1 million per playoff round as a bonus. Ultimately, he’ll get a two-year deal worth more than $10 million total, though the only issue is whether the second year is guaranteed or at the team’s option. It shouldn’t matter.

My Quick Take: Forget the ugly headlines and worst-case scenarios. Deveney is right. Nelson won’t be leaving Golden State.

Deveney’s post offers two good reasons for Nellie staying put. First, Nelson is 67 years old. This is his last coaching gig before retiring to his palatial Maui crib. Second, if Nelson left Golden State, he would have nowhere to work. It’s almost September, so all head coaching positions have been filled. He would be leaving six millions dollars on the table, which isn’t Nellie’s style.

There’s a bigger reason Nelson won’t quit the Warriors: his legacy. The mad scientist coach has always been aware of what others think and say behind his back. In fact, he’s probably too aware.

He knows there are whispers about how he left Golden State in 1994 and Dallas in 2005. To leave the Warriors a second time, in a public squabble over money, would validate those whispers about his personality quirks.

Warriors’ owner Chris Cohan knows his reputation is at stake, too. Golden State is finally shedding their laughingstock label and getting some respect around the league. Letting Nelson, the ‘We Believe’ architect, go over a few million dollars sets everything back.

Look for Nelson and Cohan to settle their differences. Both men have too much at stake.

Will Nelson stay or leave Golden State? Get at us in the comment box below with your thoughts.

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