Terry Stotts won't get the chance to turn around the sagging fortunes of the Atlanta Hawks.
Stotts, the longest-tenured coach in the Eastern Conference, has been fired, according to ESPN's David Aldridge and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
A source told the newspaper that Stotts was informed of the club's decision Thursday night, with a news conference being planned for Friday.
Stotts did not immediately return a page left by The Associated Press early Friday. A phone message left for team officials by the AP was also not immediately returned.
Stotts' firing completes the massive shakeup among Eastern Conference coaches.
Despite coaching just 137 games for the Hawks, Stotts had been on the job longer than any other East coach. No other East coach has logged more than one season with his current team.
Stotts compiled a 52-85 mark after taking over for Lon Kruger on Dec. 26, 2002. Stotts' record stands as the third-worst winning percentage in Hawks history (.380).
The Hawks went 28-54 last season, missing the playoffs for a fifth straight season.
Who will replace Stotts?
Doc Rivers, a former Hawks player, might have been a candidate had he not taken the Celtics job.
Other names mentioned by the Journal-Constitution: Byron Scott, Mike Fratello and Lionel Hollins, currently an assistant coach with the Memphis Grizzlies. Hawks general manager Billy Knight was formerly the Grizzlies GM.
Despite a Hawks mid-season facelift, which included their coming under new ownership and making several cost-cutting trades that left the team with only four players under contract, Stotts was able to get some quality wins in the last month of the regular season.
Stotts was hoping that would be enough to keep him for the last year of his contract.
While the Hawks' problems won't disappear with the firing of Stotts, whoever takes his place can look forward to the benefits reaped by their terrible season.
First, Atlanta will have two first-round picks in the draft in June. Also, by trading away Glenn Robinson, Theo Ratliff and Shareef Abdur-Rahim, the Hawks have more than $20 million in cap space to put toward free agents during the summer.
The new coach will be working with new ownership.
The sale of the Hawks and the NHL's Atlanta Thrashers to a nine-man group of investors was completed in March by AOL Time Warner, which took over the teams through mergers that gave it control of Turner Broadcasting.
Those last few paragraphs make me almost feel sorry for Stotts. The Hawks have some cap space to work with and they might finally get someone decent (Kobe or AI). They have two draft picks to use, and as noted the Hawks played better ball in the final month of the season (of course there wasn't much farther down they could have gone).
I still can't believe that a guy who coached only 137 games was the longest tenured coach in the East. Ouch. I do think that Larry Brown is going to outlast Stott's stats.
(edited by Torchslasher on 7.5.04 1023) "Yes, yes I did it. I killed Evette. I hated her, SO much...it...it...the flames...flames...FLAMES...on the side of my face...breathing...breathless...heaving breathes...heaving..."
Miss White- Clue (trust me, it's all in the delivery)
Originally posted by ekedolphinSo, who's the longest-tenured coach in the Eastern Conference now? Rick Carlisle? Larry Brown? Paul Silas?
Eddie Jordan of the Wizards, at a whopping 11 months (as per PTI).
(Not Bob Kohm)
In the context of baseball, the use of drugs hurts only the player. In the context of baseball, the use of alcohol hurts only the player. In the context of baseball, womanizing hurts whom? Maybe the wife of the player? In the context of baseball, felonies are crimes against society, not against baseball. In the context of baseball, gambling is the only crime against baseball.
Gambling, in the context of baseball, is a capital offense and Rose has richly earned-- hell, he agreed to-- his death sentence. Let him hang.
Bob Kohm, co-owner of Rotojunkies.com (rotojunkies.com) , and a large market kind of guy.
After watching some Hawks games this year, I think he does a decent job with the no-names he has to use because they play harder than they should most of the time. C'mon, Bob Sura becomes Mr. Triple Double? Stephen Jackson's becoming the clutch player instead of falling to complete oblivion? It's not all Stotts' fault the Hawks are crappy.
I mean, the organization MADE GUARANTEES the Hawks were making the playoffs last season before pulling back as the Hawks went into Lottery-Land. The "all-star" roster of Shareef, Glenn Robinson, and Jason Terry had no chemistry whatsoever.
Maybe the Hawks need a strong GM who has strong goals and vision for the Hawks to be a good contenders for the Eastern Conference. Nobody who was recently drafted doesn't seem to be on the roster anymore except Terry. I wonder what kind of value Terry has on the market as he is not a true point guard at 6'1" but can provide some scoring as a starter.
Originally posted by KawshenOther names mentioned by the Journal-Constitution: Byron Scott, Mike Fratello and Lionel Hollins, currently an assistant coach with the Memphis Grizzlies
Yeah baby Mike Fratello. When you wanna be pretty okay and bow out in the first round of the playoffs, Mike Fratello is your guy. Although I guess at the least they could pretend Fratello's return is like going back to the days of Nique. I'd bet on Hollins though.
The Celtics are not nearly as good as the Nets. The Nets are the defending champs in the East and they showed why. They have the best player in basketball. I'd like to build a team around Jason Kidd, he makes everyone else on his team better.