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NBA Rumors: Dave Joerger Close To Becoming Timberwolves Coach; Grizzlies Interested in John Calipari

Memphis Grizzlies head coach Dave Joerger is close to accepting the same position with the Minnesota Timberwolves.


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Memphis Grizzlies head coach Dave Joerger is close to accepting the same position with the Minnesota Timberwolves, according to ESPN.

Joerger interviewed with the Timberwolves Tuesday, and since the two sides have made “significant process.” The only thing holding up a deal is specifics regarding compensation details with the Grizzlies.

Per ESPN NBA insider Marc Stein:

The Wolves are restricted to offering draft picks and/or cash to Memphis to free Joerger from his contract with the Grizzlies. But one source said Thursday that Joerger landing in his home state with the Wolves is “the way this thing is headed.”

According to USA TODAY Sports, compensation should be similar to that of the Boston Celtics-LosAngeles Clippers deal last summer with Doc Rivers. Los Angeles sent a first-round draft pick to Boston, as league rules restrict players from being included in deals for coaches.

Per Yahoo! Sports, if Memphis gets too greedy, the Timberwolves are content waiting for Joerger to get fired.

On Monday, the Grizzlies fired CEO Jason Levien due a to a rift between he and controlling owner Robert Pera. Per an ESPN report, Para expressed “dismay” with Joerger early on in the season and was considering firing the first-year coach before Memphis righted the ship.

Joerger is a Minnesota native and has a close relationship with Timberwolves president Flip Saunders, his mentor. Joerger and former Toronto Raptors coach Sam Mitchell are the only known candidates to have interviewed for the vacant position.

As for Memphis: Grantland’s Bill Simmons reported the team could make a play for Chicago Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau, offering him a deal similar to what Stan Van Gundy received from Detroit, which would give him not only coaching duties but a say in personnel matters.

ESPN reported Eric Musselman is considered a candidate as well. Musselman, an associate coach at Arizona State and former coach of the Warriors and Kings, is not considered a “legitimate candidate” for the position, according to Basketball Insiders.

Like the Lakers and Cavaliers, the Grizzlies are also expected to gauge the interest of Kentucky’s John Calipari. According to, the team plans to offer Cal a substantial offer.

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