Despite there being no NBA games yesterday, we still had plenty to talk about on the news front with the Phoenix Suns deciding to part ways, with former Coach of the Year Monty Williams after four seasons with the team.
Despite being let go, Williams was wildly successful during his time with the team (a trend that is disturbingly becoming more and more prevalent around the league). In four seasons, the Suns made the playoffs three times, won five playoff series, and a Western Conference title in 2021. This marked the team’s most successful stretch since Alvin Gentry was the head coach from 2008 to 2013.
Long-time fans of the New Orleans Pelicans will recall that Monty Williams first got his start as a head coach with our team (back when they were still the Hornets) in 2010. He coached the team from 2010 to 2015 – leading the team to the playoffs twice in that time. Fun fact: he actually coached the team through the rebranding from the Hornets to the Pelicans.
With his ties to the team, there has been some speculation that Williams may reunite with the Pelicans.
Given Williams’ track record, it is unlikely that he doesn’t land a head coaching gig elsewhere – if that is what he pleases. But if he can’t find something he likes, or he wants to spend some time as an assistant coach (being a head coach is a difficult/time-consuming endeavor), he could look to return to his old home as a part of Head Coach Willie Green’s staff.
By all accounts, the team appears very pleased with Willie Green’s imprint on the team in his first two years as a coach, so it is unlikely that the Pelicans would explore swapping him for Williams.
It will be interesting to see where he ultimately lands. But the Pelicans could certainly benefit from Williams’ contributions, especially if current Lead Assistant Coach Jarron Collins ends up getting the head coaching job with the Detroit Pistons.