The New Orleans Pelicans could be close to naming their new head coach. According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, sources are saying the Pelicans plan to hire Willie Green as head coach. The hire makes a lot of sense and the 39-year old might be able to take advantage of the roster situation in NOLA. With Zion Williamson on his rookie contract, many coaches would be interested in being in the same position.
The Pelicans fired head coach Steve Van Gundy after the end of the season.
Sources: The Pelicans are planning to hire Suns assistant Willie Green. Green, 39, has played 12 NBA seasons and has developed a strong reputation across five seasons as an assistant, including two titles in Golden State.https://t.co/sdjV49uw3h
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) July 13, 2021
Green, drafted in 2003 in the second round by Seattle, spent 12 seasons in the league and last played for the Orlando Magic in 2015. Over the course of his career, Green made the most out of his situation and became a reliable guard as a starter for some time and as a backup. You don’t have a career that lasts over a decade without being the real deal.
Since his playing career ended, Green has coached for two different NBA organizations. From 2016-2019 he was with the Golden State Warriors, winning two championships in his time as a coach. Since then he has been with the Phoenix Suns and is currently trying to help his team win a title, his third.
Prior to the NBA, Green played for his hometown Detroit Mercy Titans, and his #30 is retired there. With a young roster that some feel isn’t built to last, it will be a challenge for whoever is the head coach. Willie Green may just be tough enough to make it work.