Rick Pitino has had a successful coaching tenure in Greece, after being ousted by Louisville amid the FBI investigation into college basketball. It is no secret that he wants to make a return to coaching in the U.S.
While it is hard to see a serious college program hiring him, given the uncertainty around the NCAA’s eventual handling of the situation at Louisville, Pitino has also made it known that he’d be interested in the NBA. He last coached in the league in 2001, with the Boston Celtics.
Now, it sounds like Pitino has had at least cursory discussions about an NBA job. Per one report, he’s interested in the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Longtime NBA writer Peter Vecsey reports that Rick Pitino and owner Dan Gilbert have spoken about the Cavaliers job.
Vecsey, a Hall of Famer that spent the bulk of his career at the New York Post, is now writing individually for subscribers at his Patreon.
That article is behind a paywall, but he and New York Times writer Marc Stein have both tweeted about the report.
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) April 21, 2019
As you could probably guess, Dick Vitale is on board with the idea. He’s been promoting Pitino for jobs since he was fired.
— Dick Vitale (@DickieV) April 21, 2019
Pitino’s on-court success in college is without question. The NBA has largely been a different story. In 5+ total years with the Celtics and, in the late 80s, the New York Knicks, he has a 192-220 record.
The Cavaliers are a young, rebuilding team in the wake of LeBron James’ departure last summer. Pitino would be a bold choice, but still, a very surprising one.