Lionel Hollins, late of Brooklyn, spoke with Sirius XM Monday and had advice for the Nets ...and Knicks... on Mike Conley Jr. ... pay the man, and some as well for anyone who may want to coach in Brooklyn ... watch out for the marketing. Stefan Bondy, also late of Brooklyn, transcribed it and wrote it up.
On Conley, Hollins said teams should follow the basic advice of Rod Tidwell in "Jerry Maguire," Show him the money.
"I don’t know if Michael looks elsewhere but that might end up being the best move. Mike is at that crossroads where he’s (28) years old. He’s coming up on a contract year.," Hollins told SiriusXM.
"He wants to get paid," Hollins added. "Will Memphis pay him as much as somebody else? If he can get to a situation that has a future of winning or is he going to go to a team that doesn’t have a future of winning? That’s probably going to be important to him as well."
Hollins, who coached Conley for five years and had a great relationship with him, thinks that while Memphis can pay him more than, say, the Nets and Knicks, they've already paid Marc Gasol and the team may need a full rebuild.
Conley makes less than $10 million this year and with the increased salary cap --and shortage of point guards, he should double that number this summer. The Nets and Knicks of course can offer him big bucks, but that winning thing ... they might have problems there. As for Hollins firing affecting Conley's choice, Mike Mazzeo of ESPN quoted a source earlier this month saying that the Nets are still very much in it.
As for coaching in the big city, Hollins (who is still owed more than a year's worth of salary) seemed to be criticizing the Nets in a discussing the what you don't want if you're a coach ... meddling and massaging.. He didn't need to mention the Nets. He left little to no doubt about who he was talking about. Here's what he said, per Bondy...
"The main thing when you’re looking for a job is finding somebody that allows you to be you and lets you coach as you coach. If you’re successful, great. If you’re not, get rid of him. But the micromanaging, the meddling of who should play and how you should talk to this guy and how you should talk to the media, what you should say or shouldn’t say because how it looks for the organization versus just speaking the truth.
"Those things weigh on you when you spend so much time trying to massage everybody instead of just coaching. I think for me, a coach is the guy in charge. His relationship is the most important with the players. I think GMs have tried and wanted to be closer with the players, the marketing people want to be closer with the players and they want to sell and they want the players to feel good about their experience. The only experience you can feel good about in this league is winning. And having success. Losing and being marketed will never make you feel good."
It's no mystery that Nets ownership didn't like Hollins criticizing players in public and Mikhail Prokhorov reportedly let it be known to him through channels. (Prokhorov reportedly only spoke to Hollins twice.) The beat writers had one issue after another with his often belligerent comments ... and refusal to accept responsibility for the team's woes. At the end of his tenure, Hollins had no constituency, not the players, not the basketball operations staff, not the media and most importantly, not the ownership.
- Lionel Hollins: Knicks' target Mike Conley will chase money - Stefan Bondy - New York Daily News
- Lionel Hollins: Mike Conley 'wants to get paid' - Ohm Youngmisuk - ESPN
- Lionel Hollins breaks Nets silence with ‘meddling’ jabs - Brian Lewis - New York Post
- Lionel Hollins did not like the Brooklyn Nets' 'meddling' - Kelly Dwyer - Yahoo Sports
- Lionel Hollins criticizes "micromanaging" Nets front office - Devin Kharpertian - The Brooklyn Game