In a good give-and-take with Ryan Ruocco and Stephen A. Smith Monday, Billy King said that contrary to media reports, the next coach of the Brooklyn Nets does not have to be a big name, that ownership isn't requiring that and some of the best coaches in the league weren't marquee names when they started.
"I’ve worked with big names. It’s not about a marquee name," he assured Smith. "We want a guy who can do the job the best ... going forward for the long term. Tom Thibodeau was an assistant … our players will be fine with whoever is coach."
King wouldn't deal with specifics on name or time, but said "there are a lot of candidates out there now," adding, "I have guys in mind I've watched over the years."
The Nets GM, whose own contract was renewed only last week said that development and coaching philosophy, not further explained, were among the differences he had with Carlesimo. Smith, who earlier in the day, had told ESPN viewers that "Brook Lopez really can't stand P.J." asked King if he was "concerned about the development of Brook Lopez. I didn't hear a lot of great things about his relationship with P.J. Carlesimo." KIng didn't respond directly to Smith's question, letting it stand.
As for his own job, King once again talked about how he will have to find diamonds in the rough, as he noted the Knicks did despite being just as capped out as the Nets.
"I look at team across the river, a lot of guys on the vet Minimum," said King, noting the Nets' Brooklyn address can help. You can add players—when you’re limited in good market, you can attract good players. This group did win 49 games. We can win more than 49 games."
He said that while the team plans to "add pieces," the majority will be back." One thing that other teams have now… that we didn’t. They’ve been together for a while." He pointed specifically to Miami, Oklahoma City, Indiana and to a lesser degree the Knicks. Continuity, he said, carries rewards. "Putting a team together, keeping a team together."