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Standout USVI Basketball Talent Recognized By International Bodies FIBA, NBA and Nike

SAN ANTONIO — The Virgin Islands Basketball Federation announced Friday that Kaden Gumbs has been chosen to participate in the 11th Basketball Without Borders Americas camp hosted by the NBA and FIBA.

The camp will be held Monday, May 16 through Thursday, May 19 at La Loma Centro Deportivo (La Loma), the official home of NBA Academy Latin America, marking the first BWB camp since the BWB Global NBA All-Star in Chicago in 2020, and the first in Mexico since 2009.

According to the release, Basketball Without Borders Americas is an elite basketball skills camp for top young players from across the region. Gumbs was individually selected by the NBA and FIBA based on his outstanding basketball skills and leadership abilities.

The 6-foot-2 guard was a member of St. Croix’s Positive Guidance Basketball Club under the direction of Jose Gonzalez and recently committed to the Texas State University. Currently, Gumbs plays with JL3 (John Lucas –current Houston Rockets assistant coach) AAU team the EYBL. Gumbs scored his thousandth point this past season at San Marcos High School in Texas and is the 24th person from the Virgin Islands to partake in the prestigious event.

“I think it is an honor to play and train with the Basketball Without Borders Camp,” said Gumb. “It’s a great accomplishment for me and I can’t wait to have a great experience with the staff and other players. I’m ready to get to work and enjoy this once in a lifetime opportunity and a special “Thank you” to the Virgin Islands Basketball Federation for selecting me. I will represent the Virgin Islands to the best of my ability.”

According to the release, the campers will be coached by NBA players Leandro Bolmaro (Minnesota Timberwolves; Argentina; BWB Americas 2017) and Chris Duarte (Indiana Pacers; Dominican Republic). NBA, NBA G League and FIBA assistant coaches Lindsey Harding (Sacramento Kings), Steve Hetzel (Portland Trail Blazers), Sidney Lowe (Cleveland Cavaliers), Ron Nored (Pacers), Don Showalter (USA Basketball) and Mitch Thompson (Mexico City Capitanes) will also serve as BWB Americas coaches.

The NBA and FIBA will cover all expenses incurred by the participants of the camp, including travel costs (airfare), accommodations, ground transportation, meals and insurance for the duration of the camp, the V.I. Basketball Association said. Players and coaches will lead the campers through a variety of activities, including movement efficiency drills, offensive and defensive skill stations, three-point contests, 5-on-5 games, and life skills and leadership development sessions.

Nike, a BWB global partner since 2002, will outfit the campers and coaches with Nike apparel and footwear.

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Clutch Points Dives Deep Into Tim Duncan’s Relationship With Galpal Vanessa Macias

SAN ANTONIO — Everyone in St. Croix knows Tim Duncan.

As the Spurs’ No. 21, The Big Fundamental is widely considered the greatest power forward of all time. With his incredible talent and humble personality, Duncan helped shape the San Antonio Spurs’ winning culture, earning five championships in 19 seasons of exceptional basketball.

Most recently, the 6-foot-11 big man was inducted to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and selected to the NBA 75th Anniversary Team.

In a recent piece, however, Clutch Points dove deep into the story of the two-time NBA MVP’s significant other. Ladies and gentlemen, here’s Tim Duncan’s girlfriend Vanessa Macias.

Clutch Points Dives Deep Into Tim Duncan's Relationship With Galpal Vanessa Macias

Tim Duncan was a rare breed who stood out in basketball history by being the opposite of what was expected of a player his caliber. He wasn’t loud or flashy like Michael Jordan or Kobe Bryant. He didn’t put up highlight plays and scream his heart out like Russell Westbrook. Throughout his career, he was known as The Big Fundamental, because that’s exactly what he was. He won games and championships without personal fanfare, without a hint of ego. And for those 19 years well spent with San Antonio, Duncan became regarded as the greatest power forward of all time and one of the best players to ever step foot on the court.

With his well-known tendency to keep most things off-court private, it is then not a surprise that information about his personal life is quite scarce. In fact, most of what the public knowledge about the former Spur came from friends, teammates, coaches, and the ever-so-rare interviews and speeches he himself obliges to every now and then. One of those speeches was during his No. 21 jersey retirement, where he celebrated with fans, friends, and family, which included longtime girlfriend Vanessa Macias.

Shortly after Duncan’s last playoff game in 2016, the Spurs wasted no time honoring the best player to ever wear their jersey. Sure enough, the ceremony saw him celebrate alongside family, which included Macias, as well as Sydney and Draven, his two children from his previous marriage. Macias tweeted of the jersey retirement: “Such a wonderful celebration of a beautifully impacting man. He’s so easy to love, admire, and respect.”

Duncan started dating Vanessa, a San Antonio native, after he and his ex-wife Amy Sherrill divorced in 2013. It was in one interview back in 2017 that Duncan confirmed that he and his longtime girlfriend welcomed their first child together. According to MySanAntonio.com, the five-time NBA champion said that they had a daughter called Quill, named both after Marvel Comics superhero Peter Quill and the fact that Macias loved to write. Duncan added, “It’s a combination of all the things.” Macias herself tweeted last March 2017, “Thank you for the love and thoughts welcoming our little soul-changer, Quill.”

With all we know about the Spurs basketball legend, Macias herself is also a pretty accomplished woman. The San Antonio native was born in August 1980, just around four years younger than Duncan. She attended San Antonio College and later transferred to the University of North Texas. Macias then went on to become a radio personality and freelance writer. She also became part of the reality TV show The Amazing Race as one of the contestants, pairing up with former boyfriend Ralph Kelly.

Unlike her beau who has sworn off all social media, Macias has accounts on Twitter and Instagram. Though she seems to no longer be active on both, her past tweets and posts show random tidbits of her personal life. She has also posted several photos of her and Duncan’s dog Izzy. She has also posted several candid photos of both Duncan and Quill on Twitter, usually accompanied with witty captions. Another shot she shared saw their daughter looking up at a screen, where Duncan was shown being interviewed. The tweet read: “[Quill], we are all shocked he did media we ALL are (happy smiling emoji).

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The Biggest Sports Teams In Florida

One of the biggest sports states in the U.S. is Florida with double-digit million-dollar revenues. There are hundreds of professional sports teams in Florida. The biggest of them have millions of fans worldwide.

The biggest sports teams in Florida have been chosen from two criteria; the highest revenues and the most fans. Some of these teams have given us some of the biggest stars in American sports history. These teams are at the absolute top level in their respective sports. These are the types of teams that you could call a safe bet. Of course, every good bettor knows that nothing is ever a safe bet. Nevertheless, if you want to bet on Florida teams, you should choose a local online betting site. You can find a guide to the best betting sites in Florida at BetFlorida.com.

These teams have massive revenues making them a part of the massive business machinery that operates around sports. Sponsorships, merchandise, transfers, and ticket sales all together make a big and complex business. If you’re also interested in business, you can stay updated on Florida business news here.

The Biggest Sports Teams In Florida

Miami Heat

There is no doubt about the Miami Heat being at the top of the biggest sports teams in Florida. Miami Heat is the most popular team that Florida has. This team gave us LeBron James and Shaquille O’Neal, so they are hard not to love. Miami Heat generates hundreds of millions of dollars in a single season and has millions of fans worldwide. The team also has some huge sponsors with whom they make extremely popular merchandise for their many fans.

Orlando Magic

Another top NBA team from Florida is Orlando Magic. They are not quite as big as Miami Heat, but they still have a massive fan base and big names like Nikola Vucevic and Mo Bamba. The team originated back in 1989 and has been in the NBA finals twice since then; in 1995 and 2009. Several star players have played for Orlando Magic including Shaquille O’Neal. As you might be able to tell from their name, their biggest sponsor is Walt Disney World. The name is a clear reference to the amusement park which is the biggest tourist attraction in Orlando.

Miami Dolphins

The Miami Dolphins is one of the NFL teams with the most followers worldwide. Even though they are not the strongest team in the NFL, this league is so popular that many of the teams have a large number of followers.

Florida Gators

One of the very best teams in college basketball is the Florida team The Gators. This team has a very long history dating back to 1906. With no less than 112 seasons, Florida Gators have topped the NCAA league tables several times. The Gators is one of the richest college teams with revenues of more than one and a half million dollars a year. They have a long history of creating future NFL superstars. This makes them one of the most liked and most valuable college basketball teams in the US.

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Sacramento Kings Second Round Draft Pick Compared To St. Croix’s Rakeem Christmas

SACRAMENTO — The second round of the NBA draft is a crapshoot. For every Richaun Holmes, there is a player like Rakeem Christmas, who was drafted the pick before Holmes and has played in a total of 30 games in the league.

For every second rounder like Isaiah Thomas, Khris Middleton, Draymond Green or Nikola Jokic, there are countless players who never even make it past a single training camp.

Fewer than 500 players are blessed to play in the NBA every season and then 60 new draft picks line up to try and take those jobs the next summer. Making it in the league is a battle and not one for the faint of heart.

The newest face trying to make his mark with the Sacramento Kings is Portuguese big man Neemias Queta, who general manager Monte McNair selected with the No. 39 overall pick in the 2021 NBA Draft.

The 7-footer out of Utah State put up big numbers at the NCAA level, but the path to the NBA is narrow, even if you’re tall enough to change light bulbs without a step stool.

Queta came into Summer League training camp with some ankle soreness and missed most of the opening three days of camp. He has been able to step in and started the last two games for the Kings in Las Vegas, which is a very good sign for his development and his ability to learn on the fly.

He is long, rangy and a lot more agile than expected. He has shown an ability to defend the paint and the perimeter and he has an advanced understanding when guarding the pick-and-roll. 

“He’s going to have some patches, trying to understand the language and understand the game, because it’s different than college,” Summer League and Stockton Kings head coach Bobby Jackson said. “But he asks a lot of questions. He understands it. He wants to learn. He’s a hard worker.”

Jackson said that Queta is behind the curve after missing time, but he’s quickly adjusting to the uptempo style of Summer League and he’s holding his own against the competition.

In Monday’s win over the Charlotte Hornets, Queta finished with nine points, six rebounds and a highlight-reel block that got his coach’s attention.

“He had one play yesterday where he sprinted and showed his athleticism,” Jackson said. “He blocked it, we came down, we got a dunk and that’s what we’re going to need him to do.”

That’s the type of play that became commonplace for Queta at the NCAA level. In his final year at Utah State, he averaged 3.3 blocks per game, which was good enough for third in the nation.

In the team’s 88-75 win over the Washington Wizards on Tuesday, Queta managed to post six points, six rebounds, a block and a steal in 21 minutes. He’s a big body in the post and he’s extremely vocal, despite his inexperience at the pro level.

“I feel like it’s just natural, I’ve been [vocal] for quite a while on pretty much every team I’ve been a part of, I’ve been one of the most vocal guys” Queta said following the Kings’ win on Tuesday. “As a defensive anchor, I’ve got to make sure I’m in the right spot. I’ve got to make sure I tell people where to be when I see something.”

The 22-year-old is mature and already earning more time. He has a toughness the Kings need and there is potential for him to vastly improve his body when he starts working with the training staff in Sacramento

For now, he’s holding down the fort for the Kings in the middle and he’s already shown more than what you would expect for a player that has barely had time to unpack a bag. 

“He’s been tremendous,” Jackson said. “We’re asking him to protect the paint, rebound, block shots and be the anchor on the defensive end. And that’s what I’m going to ask him to do this year in the G League.”

Queta, who signed a two-way contract with the Kings over the weekend, will bounce back and forth between Sacramento and Stockton this season. He can be in uniform for up to 50 games with the main club, although Jackson and his staff likely will build their defense around the big man down in the G League.

The Kings are deep in the frontcourt, but there is always a chance for a trade, injuries or players just struggling during an 82-game season. This is a good thing for Queta. He will get a chance to learn, work on his body and get plenty of reps running up and down the court in Stockton. 

Kings rookie Queta continuing to impress in Las Vegas originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

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Duncan Talks The Talk At Hall of Fame After Walking The Walk In Vaunted Career

UNCASVILLE, Connecticut — St. Croix legend Tim Duncan — who made a 19-year NBA career out of letting his basketball play speak for him — gave an All-Star speaking performance at the Basketball Hall of Fame that thrilled the crowd on a different stage Saturday night.

Accompanied by San Antonio Spurs Hall of Famer David Robinson, and with his only NBA head coach, Gregg Popovich, Duncan — whose famously stoic demeanor followed him throughout his great career — admitted he’d never been more nervous than he was before the induction ceremony.

“I will try to get through this,” the 15-time All-Star, 15-time All-Defensive Team and 15-time All-NBA selection said with a smile. “This is the most nervous I have ever been in my life. I’ve been through Finals, through Game 7s, and this officially is the most nervous I’ve ever been in my life. I’ve been pacing in my room all day, so let’s see what we get.”

The USVI icon began by thanking Robinson, with whom he won two of his five championships with the Spurs, for showing him how to be a pro. Like Garnett, Duncan also thanked his fellow NBA inductees for making him better.

“People always ask, ‘What did he tell you? What did he show you?'” Duncan said of Robinson, before adding, with a laugh: “I don’t remember one thing we sat down and talked about specifically.

“But what he did was he was a consummate pro, he was an incredible father, he was an incredible person, and he showed me how to be a good teammate, a great person to the community, all those things. Not by sitting there and telling me how to do it, but by being that.”

Duncan also thanked his parents, William and Ione, and joked they had a combined “zero basketball knowledge” between them.

“But they taught me about the game more than anyone else,” Duncan said. “You heard the mantra that my mom instilled in me — good, better, best, never let it rest until your good is better and your better is your best — they told me, and made me, have pride in everything I did.”

He then discussed his remarkable journey, from not picking up a basketball until he was 14 years old to earning a scholarship to Wake Forest by playing a pickup game at a court near the hotel where his eventual college coach, Dave Odom, stayed.

“I have no idea how I played, but I played well enough that he offered me a scholarship,” Duncan said. “He saw something in me, and he took a chance on this kid from the [U.S. Virgin] Islands. Thank you, Coach O, thank you for seeing something in me that I didn’t see at the time.”

Duncan went through his career, highlighting many of his teammates, before eventually settling on two fixtures of so much of his time in San Antonio, teammates Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili — both of whom were in attendance.

“To look to your left and look to your right and have the same guys there year in and year out is unbelievable,” he said. “It’s a blessing beyond what I can put into words. Manu Ginobili, Tony Parker, I can’t wait to see you guys up here and for me to not be up here. It was an honor sharing the court with you guys. Thank you for your friendship, thank you for your brotherhood, thank you for all of the experiences that we shared on that court.”

Then, after choking up while talking about his wife and children, Duncan finally turned his attention to Popovich, whom Duncan joked would be angry he talked about him at all.

“I don’t want to talk about him. He’s going to get mad at me if I talk about him,” Duncan said.

“The standard you set … you showed up after I got drafted, you came to my island, you sat with my friends, my family, you talked with my dad. I thought that was normal. It’s not. You’re an exceptional person.

“Thank you for teaching me about basketball but, beyond that, teaching me that it’s not all about basketball. It’s about what’s going on in the world, your family … just, for everything. Thank you for being the amazing human being that you are.”

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St. Croix’s Rakeem Christmas Moves Closer To Home To Play Professional Basketball

SAN JUAN — St. Croix basketball star Rakeem Christmas has signed a professional contract in Puerto Rico’s Baloncesto Superior Nacional with the Mets de Guaynabo, the team has announced.

Christmas last played professionally in Turkey, suiting up for four games earlier this year with OGM Ormanspor. He averaged four points and 2.3 rebounds in nine minutes per game.

Christmas, raised in St. Croix, played parts of two NBA seasons with the Indiana Pacers after being selected in the second round of the NBA Draft in 2015.

He was a USA Today Second Team All-American as a senior after averaging 17.5 points and 9.1 rebounds.

The Guaynabo Mets signed big man Christmas on Friday.

He is a former second-round draft pick with professional experience in the NBA, NBA G-League, Turkey, China, New Zealand and the Philippines.

Christmas and his mother Landra Hamid moved to St. Croix when he was two years old. While he lived here, his mother died due to kidney failure at the age of 28.

After his mother died, he remained in St. Croix and was raised there by his grandmother, Evelyn Hamid.

When he was 13 years old he moved to Philadephia to live with his aunt, Amira Hamid, who became his legal guardian.

Christmas and his partner Jasmine Jordan (Michael Jordan’s daughter) announced on Christmas Day in 2018 that they were expecting a child.

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Minnesota Timberwolves Name Virgin Islander David Vanterpool Assistant Head Coach

MINNEAPOLIS — The Minnesota Timberwolves named David Vanterpool as Associate Head Coach.

Vanterpool, with family from St. Thomas, had spent the previous seven seasons as an assistant coach with the Portland Trail Blazers. 

“We are thrilled to add someone with David’s coaching acumen and resume to our staff,” said Timberwolves President of Basketball Operations Gersson Rosas. “David brings an impressive skillset that will be a great complement to Ryan and the rest of our coaching staff. He played an integral role in Portland’s success, earning a strong reputation as a people connecter and relationship builder. In partnership with Ryan, we are confident they will create the best possible environment for our players to succeed on and off the floor.” 

Vanterpool’s family has strong roots in the U.S. Virgin Islands. He was born in Daytona Beach, Florida.

“David is someone I have had a great amount of respect for throughout his time in Portland,” said Timberwolves Head Coach Ryan Saunders. “His ability to connect with players and create lasting relationships is something that will be critical for us. Also, his basketball knowledge and attention to detail will be invaluable. We’re excited for David to implement his schemes and philosophies on the defensive side of the ball and maximize our players’ strengths. David is an important addition to our team as we look to build the best coaching staff possible. We welcome him and his family to our Timberwolves family.”

Prior to the Blazers, Vanterpool spent two seasons (2010-12) with the Oklahoma City Thunder as director of pro personnel. He was named an assistant coach on the Canadian Men’s National Team in 2015. Vanterpool is a five-time coach for the NBA’s Basketball Without Borders initiative and ran coaching clinics in the Bahamas during the summer of 2017. He most recently served on the coaching staff of the 2018 NBA Africa Game in Pretoria, South Africa, and as an assistant coach at USA Basketball Men’s National Team minicamp in July of 2018.

“I’m very excited for this opportunity to join the Minnesota Timberwolves and work for Gersson and Ryan,” Vanterpool said. “Obviously there is a lot of talent on this team. I look forward to working with Ryan and the rest of our staff to put our players in the best possible position to succeed.”

Vanterpool played for European power CSKA Moscow from 2005-07, winning a Euroleague title there before becoming an assistant coach with the club upon retirement.

He earned an All-Euroleague Second Team selection during the 2003-04 season while playing for Italian champion Montepaschi Siena. Vanterpool won a CBA Championship with the Yakima Sun Kings, and was CBA MVP before being called up to the Washington Wizards, where he appeared in 22 games in 2000-01.

He also spent time with the Detroit Pistons and New Jersey Nets.

https://www.nba.com/timberwolves/news/minnesota-timberwolves-name-david-vanterpool-associate-head-coach-0

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St. Croix’s Tim Duncan Comes Home To Found Educational Program For Disadvantaged Children

CHRISTIANSTED — St. Croix native Tim Duncan returned home to help launch a new children’s education initiative called “Yes! Our Kids Can.”

Duncan and his wife Vanessa will be donating $500,000 via The Tim Duncan Foundation to help kick start the program, which is designed to help create higher education opportunities and career readiness for disadvantaged children.

The program aims to help every parent and teacher create an expectation of success and prosperity in the minds of every disadvantaged child.

Duncan said he was approached about the program months ago and when he returned to his home in Texas, he and Vanessa Macias discussed bringing the program to the territory.

Macias and their daughter, Quill, made the trip to St. Croix with Duncan.

“I was blown away by it. I went home and told Vanessa about it. She said we need to take this program and implement it in the Virgin Islands because it is easy to do and it will have a great impact on the kids, not only for the short term but the long term,” said Duncan. “We’re very excited about it and I know it will do great things for the kids of the Virgin Islands.”

This is just another example of the huge charitable effort Timmy has put into the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The weekend also included a tour of St. Croix with former President Bill Clinton and former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. 

Duncan also donated over $250,000 and countless supplies following the active 2017 hurricane season that included a direct hit from Hurricanes Irma and Maria.

According to sources, Tim Duncan makes roughly five million dollars a year, according to his 2015 tax returns. With a net worth of about $130 million and an average income of $10 million per year as of 2019, the former NBA player made news as a huge supporter of charity because of his kind gesture. A $750,000 donation is not something we regularly see, especially for celebrities in Timmy’s caliber. But did you know that you can also support charity in your area without having to become an NBA superstar?

Well, the good thing about it is that you get to donate what you can afford, there’s no minimum or maximum limit. However, anyone can make a donation as huge as Timmy’s… it may take time but it’s very possible! Yes, it starts with being smart, strategic, and highly committed to what you do. It also requires you to have some financial management skills, including being a disciplined spender and as you can learn more here, keeping accurate track of your earnings and spending. After all, Timmy still shops at Old Navy despite his ginormous net worth! With a business-oriented mind, the right financial management tools, and the right skills, you can easily turn your income into huge surpluses or a fund that you could be making significant donations from, every once in a while. 

To read more:

https://www.ksat.com/sports/nba/spurs/tim-duncan-returns-home-to-start-childrens-education-program-visits-with-clintons

https://www.poundingtherock.com/2019/6/4/18652783/tim-duncan-donates-500000-to-children-education-initiative-in-virgin-islands

https://news4sanantonio.com/sports/spurs-zone/watch-tim-duncan-returns-to-the-us-virgin-islands-to-help-with-educational-needs

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REPORTS: David Vanterpool of St. Thomas Being Considered For Three NBA Head Coaching Positions

MEMPHIS — David Vanterpool of St. Thomas is being considered for the head coaching position of at least three NBA teams.

Vanterpool, 46, has been on staff of the Portland Trail Blazers since 2012, will be interviewed by the New Orleans Pelicans, the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Memphis Grizzlies. 

The Virgin Islander is a “hot name” in the assistant coaching ranks of the NBA, according to the Memphis Commercial Appeal.

But if Vanterpool is to get to top coaching position in Tennessee, he will have to overcome a trend the team has had since it moved from Vancouver, Canada in 1995 — they mostly hire “seasoned” coaches.

As the Grizzlies search for their ninth head coach since the team’s move to Tennessee and their fifth since owner Robert Pera acquired the team in 2012, a trend stands out when reviewing the franchise’s coaching history.

The only coaches who have led the Grizzlies to the playoffs after non-playoff seasons were 55 or older when hired.

Franchise leadership consisting of then-owner Michael Heisley and then-general manager Jerry West shocked the basketball universe by hiring Hubie Brown, then 69, to coach the team early in the 2002-03 season.

Brown, who had not coached in 15 years and was working as a TV analyst, took over an 0-8 team and led it to the best record in franchise history at the time.

He took the Grizzlies to their first-ever playoffs the following season, earning 2003-04 NBA coach of the year honors as he did.

A few years later, with the Grizzlies sporting an 11-33 record midway through the 2008-09 season amid a playoff drought, Heisley and then-general manager Chris Wallace hired 55-year-old Lionel Hollins away from an assistant coaching role with the Milwaukee Bucks to take the head job in Memphis.

Hollins is credited with helping mold Mike Conley and Marc Gasol into franchise icons.

He led the team to a first-round playoff upset of top-seeded San Antonio in 2010-11 after a four-year playoff drought.

Former backup point guard Earl Watson recalled Brown’s tenure fondly – and comically – in a recent interview with the “Maybe I’m Crazy” podcast.

“I was young and dumb and I was like, ‘we hired the TNT guy,’” Watson said.

The Grizzlies had finished 23-59 during their first season in Memphis, which followed a dismal six-year run in Vancouver.

“It was a losing culture in Memphis,” Watson said as he described a young Grizzlies core that “just didn’t know who we were.”

Brown, who was the oldest coach in the NBA, entered and immediately changed the culture.

“He was like, ‘we’re going to have two-a-days for the next week,’” Watson recalled. “We were ten games in to the season.”

Brown told the Grizzlies that ten of them would love him and three of them would hate him, a reference to the 10-man rotation he dutifully employed as a coach.

“He walked out of the locker room,” Watson said. “Everyone lingered and the locker room and we were like, ‘yo, this dude is evil.’ And he was the best coach I ever had in my life.”

Brown resigned after a 5-7 start to the 2004-05 season, citing health reasons.

“All I know is the whole team is going to miss Coach Brown,” center Lorenzen Wright said.

Mike Fratello, then 57, took over for Brown and led the Grizzlies to two more playoff appearances.

After an 11-30 start to the 2008-09 season that led to Marc Iavaroni’s firing, Heisley and then-general manager Chris Wallace hired Hollins mid-season from an assistant coaching position with Milwaukee.

Some believed Hollins deserved to be named head coach when Brown resigned a few years before. At the time, Hollins was in his second stint as an assistant with the franchise. He served as interim head coach for four games before Fratello entered.

But Fratello retained Hollins as an assistant, and when Hollins finally got his chance to lead the team in 2009, he built on the success he’d helped create while on staff under Brown and Fratello.

“He’s a tough-minded coach. He’s a no-tolerance coach. He’s confrontational,” Tony Allen recalled of Hollins in a 2015 Commercial Appeal article. “He wouldn’t mind getting in your grill. He’s one of those coaches who will tell you about yourself instantly. And he wouldn’t be shy about telling you in front of everybody. But at the same time he’s encouraging and he’s a motivator.”

The Grizzlies won their first playoff series ever under Hollins’ direction in 2011 and won a franchise-record 56 games in a 2012-13 season that ended in the Western Conference Finals. Ultimately, that was his final season as coach after a successful four-and-a-half year run.

“You have to look at it as a whole in terms of what coach has done for this team and this city,” Marc Gasol said before the team’s final playoff run under Hollins. “He’s changed the whole mentality and the culture as far as professional basketball. You have to give him the credit. The team has improved every year. And every member of the core group has grown because our coach keeps pushing us to do more. I don’t see myself playing for another coach. I just don’t see it.”

Sidney Lowe (2001-02)

Age at hiring : 40

Record: 23-67

Lowe coached the Grizzlies through the transition from Vancouver to Memphis. He resigned after an 0-8 start to the 2002-03 season.

Hubie Brown (2002-04)

Age at hiring : 69

Record: 83-85

Brown took over for Lowe, guided the team to a 28-46 finish and set the stage for the team’s first-ever playoff appearance the following season. Memphis went 50-32 in Brown’s only full season as coach in 2003-04 as Brown won NBA coach of the year. Brown resigned after a 5-7 start to the 2004-05 season, citing health reasons.

Mike Fratello (2004-06)

Age at hiring : 57

Record: 95-83

Fratello took over for Brown and led the team to consecutive playoff appearances. The Grizzlies fired Fratello after a 6-24 start to the 2006-07 season. He left with the best winning percentage of any coach in franchise history.

Marc Iavaroni (2007-09)

Age at hiring: 50

Record: 33-90

Iavaroni coached the Grizzlies through the trade of Pau Gasol, Mike Conley’s rookie year and the first half of Marc Gasol’s rookie year before he was dismissed after an 11-30 start to the 2008-09 season.

Lionel Hollins (2009-13)

Age at hiring : 55

Record: 196-155

With attendance dwindling amid poor play and a national economic downturn, Hollins took over for the second half of the 2008-09 season with uncertainty swirling over Conley’s ability to be a starter – much less a star – in the NBA. Hollins led the team to a 13-26 finish to the season. With Zach Randolph added to the roster, Memphis improved to 40-42 in 2009-10 before the true birth of the “Grit and Grind” era. The Grizzlies went 143-103 in Hollins’ final three season as coach.

Dave Joerger (2013-16)

Age at hiring: 39

Record: 147-99

After six years on the Grizzlies’ staff, Joerger took over for Hollins and inherited a franchise-record 56-win team. He led the Grizzlies to consecutive 50-win seasons but was fired after the injury-depleted Grizzlies lost a first-round playoff series to the Spurs 4-0 in 2016.

David Fizdale (2016-17)

Age at hiring: 42

Record: 50-51

The Grizzlies exited February with a 36-25 record in Fizdale’s only full season. But with Chandler Parsons unable to provide consistent contributions amid persistent knee issues in the first year of his contract, Memphis struggled with depth issues all year and lost in the first round of the playoffs. The Grizzlies fired Fizdale after he and Gasol clashed during a 7-12 start to the 2017-18 season.

J.B. Bickerstaff (2018-2019)

Age at hiring: 39

Record (not including interim period): 48-97

Named interim coach after Fizdale’s firing, Bickerstaff took over a roster playing without Mike Conley. With Allen and Randolph no longer part of the roster, the Grizzlies struggled to a 22-60 record, their worst in a decade. The Grizzlies named Bickerstaff the full-time head coach after the season. He led the team to a 12-5 start this year, but the season took a hard downturn. After a flurry of trades and amid mounting injuries, the Grizzlies went 7-7 in March. But a 33-49 overall record left franchise leadership unimpressed. Bickerstaff was fired last week.

https://www.nbcsports.com/northwest/portland-trail-blazers/layers-lillard-behind-statistics-growing-floor-general-and-leader

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Tweets: St. Thomas’ David Vanterpool ‘Front Runner’ For Cleveland Cavaliers Head Coaching Position

CLEVELAND — David Vanterpool of St. Thomas is one of at least four coaches the Cleveland Cavaliers are considering to be their new head coach.

“Cavaliers expect to interview several assistants involved in playoffs, including Utah’s Alex Jensen and Portland’s David Vanterpool, sources tell ESPN,” ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweeted Sunday. “For now, they can do a round with non-playoff coaches.”

A person who goes by “daddytis” associated with USVI Basketball tweeted Monday that Vanterpool is the “front-runner” for the Cavaliers job.

Another NBA insider agreed.

“David Vanterpool will succeed in Cleveland,” NBA scout Steven Alves tweeted on Sunday. “Trust me.”

The Virgin Islander is also being considered for the head coaching position with the New Orleans Pelicans, according to SB Nation.

Tweets: St. Thomas' David Vanterpool 'Front Runner' For Cleveland Cavaliers Head Coaching Position
Virgin Islander David Vanterpool is an assistant coach with the Portland Trail Blazers, who are currently in the NBA Playoffs.

Two coaches not affected by the playoffs, Miami Heat assistant coach Juwan Howard and Dallas Mavericks assistant coach Jamahl Mosely are interviewing with the Cavaliers this week, according to Wojnarowski.

Jensen has coached the Canton Charge, the Cavs’ affiliate in the G League and was the league’s Coach of the Year in 2012-13, and is tight with members of the Cavs’ front office.

Cleveland parted ways with coach Larry Drew on Wednesday.

Tweets: St. Thomas' David Vanterpool 'Front Runner' For Cleveland Cavaliers Head Coaching Position