New Orleans Pelicans to Hire Alvin Gentry as New Head Coach

FILE - In this Saturday, Jan. 12, 2013 file photo, Phoenix Suns coach Alvin Gentry gestures during the first half of the Suns’ NBA basketball game against the Chicago Bulls in Chicago. A person familiar with the situation says the New Orleans Pelicans have hired Golden State Warriors assistant Alvin Gentry as head coach, Saturday, May 30, 2015. (PHOTO CREDIT: Nam Y. Huh, File/Associated Press)
FILE – In this Saturday, Jan. 12, 2013 file photo, Phoenix Suns coach Alvin Gentry gestures during the first half of the Suns’ NBA basketball game against the Chicago Bulls in Chicago. A person familiar with the situation says the New Orleans Pelicans have hired Golden State Warriors assistant Alvin Gentry as head coach, Saturday, May 30, 2015. (PHOTO CREDIT: Nam Y. Huh, File/Associated Press)

The New Orleans Pelicans have chosen to hire Alvin Gentry as their new head coach, a person with knowledge of the situation confirmed to USA TODAY Sports.

The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the decision had not yet been announced.

Gentry is currently an associate head coach under Steve Kerr with the Golden State Warriors, who begin the NBA Finals on Thursday against the Cleveland Cavaliers. He will begin his new endeavor after the Finals come to an end. The deal was still being finalized as of Saturday evening.

Gentry, whose previous stop was an assistant under Doc Rivers with the Los Angeles Clippers, has been a head coach for parts or all of 12 seasons with the Miami Heat, Detroit Pistons, Clippers and Phoenix Suns. His overall record is 335-370, though his teams have only reached the postseason twice (his Pistons lost in the first round in 1999, and his Suns fell in the Western Conference finals in 2010).

Gentry’s Warriors, as it so happens, swept the Pelicans in the first round of the playoffs. Little did anyone know at the time that one of the coaches who was beating Anthony Davis would soon be joining him.

The intrigue with this coaching position had everything to do with the Pelicans big man who is widely considered the NBA’s fastest rising star. According to a person with knowledge of the Pelicans’ thinking, they were drawn to Gentry’s ability to teach an up-tempo offensive style while still prioritizing the defensive end.

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SOURCE: USA Today, Sam Amick

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