Well, a dismal season is over for the 2012-13 Phoenix Suns, but a question that arises is what will happen to the interim head coach?
Seventeen-year NBA veteran Lindsey Hunter went 12-29 as he took over for Alvin Gentry, who went 13-28 at the beginning of the year, before being replaced by Hunter. So, apparently, Hunter couldn’t technically get more out of the players than Gentry. The question is what did Hunter do that Gentry couldn’t, and should he be rewarded for it by removing the interim label off of him?
In his exit interview, Hunter said, “If it’s just wins and losses, I don’t have a chance,” according to multiple sources.
Hunter was teaching a defensive mindedness, as well as instilling other principles and values into his players. Generally, it takes years and definitely a training camp to be able to achieve this feat and Hunter had neither.
Ryan Weisert of Valley of the Suns.com wrote eloquently and poignantly today,
“Coaches who were once players were almost always the type of players who gave 110% every night. This is definitely true of Hunter. Often that prevents players-turned-coaches from being able to understand, connect with, and get through to players who don’t give that type of effort. The problem that arises is that players who don’t always give maximum effort are the ones who need the most coaching. Former players turned coaches have to internally transition from being disappointed with those players to taking on the challenge of motivating them.”
To read the rest of the article go to this link. http://valleyofthesuns.com/2013/04/19/lindsey-hunter-case-for-a-coaching-change/#ixzz2QxyalPay
During Hunter’s half of the season and increasingly as the season drew to a close, the Suns were able to play the younger guys more. They were able to get good games out of and instill confidence into Kendall Marshall, Markieff Morris and Wesley Johnson, getting them to play at a higher level. This should be taken into consideration when deciding whether or not to sign Hunter to a deal.
From what I’ve heard it seems like management will wait a little bit before deciding either way on Hunter’s future.
Mark Stein said on Thursday Twitter, “Sense I get in PHX: Interim coach Lindsey Hunter NOT assured of returning but will not learn fate immediately. Suns will take some time.”
We’ll have to wait and see.