The Houston Rockets have yet to name a new head coach to take over from the post vacated by Mike D'Antoni. There are several names available to fill in the void but it appears Tyronn Lue and Jeff Van Gundy are the favorites to land the vacant head coaching position.
According to ESPN, Lue met with Rockets ownership and management and it appears talks have gone on well. However, it should be noted that there are other teams interested in naming Lue as their head coach. That includes the Los Angeles Clippers where the 43-year-old served as an assistant coach.
Lue served as one of Doc Rivers' deputies before the former NBA champion coach was relieved of his duties. Part of that was believed to be because of the bungled 1-3 lead the Clippers had in their series against the Denver Nuggets. Rivers has since joined the Philadelphia 76ers to replace Brett Brown who was also dismissed after another sorry season in Philly.
Ironically, Rivers was also in play to become the next Rockets head coach. But the Sixers wasted no time talking to the 59-year-old mentor, beating Houston and other clubs in need of a head coach to him.
Sources: Tyronn Lue Gaining ‘significant momentum’ as Rockets Next Head Coach: Clippers assistant coach Ty Lue’s candidacy for the Rockets’ head-coaching job has gathered significant momentum after a meeting with Houston’s ownership and… https://t.co/gV0xiGYqZu @bballinsiders pic.twitter.com/HbcXntTNve — Basketball Insiders (@BBallInsiders) October 14, 2020
Also, Lue appears to have gotten the nod of Rockets players. But if Houston wants the former NBA champion coach to take over, they need to do it fast. Aside from the Clippers, the New Orleans Pelicans have also held talks with Lue and reports claim that he is one of the finalists for the job. The Pels are looking for someone to replace Alvin Gentry who is believed to be headed to the Sixers to act as an assistant coach to Luke Walton.
If Lue should end up with another team, the best choice would be down to Van Gundy. The 58-year-old is the second-best option for the Rockets, someone who is no stranger to the club. It will be recalled that the current ESPN analyst called the shots for Houston from 2003 to 2007 before he was fired. He owns a 430-318 record in the regular season and is 44-44 in the postseason.
Lue would be a big fish to land. He is best remembered as the same guy who handled a LeBron James-led Cleveland Cavaliers to the 2016 NBA title. Aside from that, he steered the Cavs to three straight NBA Finals appearances. With such a resume, it comes as no surprise that multiple clubs want him to take over their head coaching vacancies.