With current head coach Kevin McHale entering the final year of his deal with the Houston Rockets, general manager Daryl Morey could use this as an opportunity to hire a qualified assistant who could one day take over head coaching duties.
According to a report by Marc Stein of CBS Sports, that person could be Lionel Hollins, the former head coach of the Memphis Grizzlies.
Word is Rockets making hard sell to Lionel Hollins to join Kevin McHale’s staff as assistant. Hollins, naturally, still chasing next HC gig
— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) June 17, 2014
The Rockets finished the regular season with a record of 54-28, eventually getting eliminated by the Portland Trail Blazers in six games in the first round of the NBA playoffs.
Hollins spent seven seasons on the sidelines with the Grizzlies organization, winning 214 games and losing 201.
While Hollins is interested in earning a head coach role right off the bat, Houston may give him the best opportunity to do so. He’s already interviewed with both the Los Angeles Lakers and Cleveland Cavaliers, but it appears that both sides will be heading in a different direction.
His reputation for defensive-minded basketball could help a Rockets team that allowed the most points per possession during the postseason.
According to Dan Feldman of ProBasketball Talk, Hollins’ inability to become more accepting of statistics and analytics is what has kept him away from the game during this span.
Even so, he’s an excellent coach who undoubtedly deserves an opportunity such as this.