Kelly Dwyer of Yahoo Sports' Ball Don't Lie offered New Year's resolutions for each of the 30 NBA team owners ... and in doing so, he offered an extreme solution to the Nets' long-term woes. He suggests that if Mikhail Prokhorov doesn't move to dump Lionel Hollins and Billy King, maybe the NBA itself "should step in."
This is what he wrote...
"Nothing’s going to change anything now, but owner Mikhail Prokhorov needs to have replacement hires lined up for GM Billy King and coach Lionel Hollins. Hollins will want nothing to do with a rebuilding phase, and King has proven unsuited for the job. This might be a situation where the league itself should step in."
Dwyer doesn't articulate what he thinks the league, presumably the commissioner, should do, but the implication is clear.
Of course, the NBA has never stepped in and ordered an owner to fire his coach and GM ... and is highly, highly unlikely to do so. The commissioner would face a revolt from owners who would not want such outside interference, no matter how bad the situation on or off the court. Hiring and firing is an owner's prerogative.
On the other hand, the commissioner can exercise influence as he apparently did with the Sixers ownership, pushing them to hire Jerry Colangelo to oversee Sam Hinkie's "Process." But that was quite different. In addition to losing as a strategy, Hinkie has antagonized other teams' owners and GM's as well as agents.
A report this weekend indicated that things got so bad that agents for draft prospects wouldn't even let their clients work out for the 76ers. Moreover, agents with clients commanding max-level money don’t want them to play for the Sixers ... and that mid-level players would need to be overpaid to consider signing.
No matter what's going on behind the scenes with the Nets, it's hard to believe the commissioner stepping in under anything but the most extreme circumstances ... and the Nets situation is not extreme.