The New Orleans Pelicans are looking for a new head coach, and Willie Green is the front-runner, according to recent sources. Despite the lack of an official announcement, Green is expected to take over as head coach for the 2021-22 NBA season.
Stan Van Gundy was fired after only one season with the Pelicans due to a poor 31-41 record in the regular season in 2020-21. The franchise decided that finishing 11th was not good enough, and they parted ways by mutual agreement.
The race for the head coach position is reportedly down to Green and Charles Lee, who is currently an assistant coach with the Milwaukee Bucks. Although both candidates do not have experience as head coaches, they are known for their contributions to player development.
Willie Green is currently serving as an assistant coach with the Phoenix Suns. However, the announcement of his hire as the New Orleans Pelicans head coach might come sooner rather than later. The Suns will have to finish their run in the NBA Finals against the Milwaukee Bucks before an official press conference is held.
Green’s signing will make him the 8th head coach in franchise history. The young coach will be charged with leading the New Orleans Pelicans to the playoffs.
On that note, here are three reasons why Willie Green can be a great choice as the New Orleans Pelicans head coach.
#1 Willie Green will bring a winning mentality to the New Orleans Pelicans
The New Orleans Pelicans have missed three consecutive NBA playoffs and will be looking to change that. The Pelicans have the talent needed; all that is left is for them to find a winning formula.
Green’s hiring might be the catalyst for change in New Orleans as he is no stranger to winning NBA championships as a coach. His first win came a year after he started his coaching career with the Golden State Warriors. He was an assistant coach under Steve Kerr, who led the Warriors to two championships in 2017 and 2018.
Congrats to my friend and college teammate Willie Green on another NBA championship! Willie continues his excellence as a great coach and mentor for the Golden State Warrior team. He’ll be a NBA head coach in 2-4 years. #Yoda pic.twitter.com/996CHEEOKY— Rashad Phillips (@RP3natural) June 9, 2018
The 39-year-old is well on his way to winning a third championship with the Phoenix Suns, who are currently in the NBA Finals. Although the competition is far from over, the Suns hold a 2-1 lead in the 7-game series.
With his hire, the New Orleans Pelicans will have a head coach that can instill the same winning mentality in the players and perhaps lead them to a deep run in the playoffs.