Jeff Van Gundy seems to be thoroughly enjoying his return to coaching, supporting the notion of Once a Coach, Always a Coach.
“One thing you can’t recreate, the competition and camaraderie,” Van Gundy said in a piece from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. “No matter what you do, you’re not going to have that same feeling of a great win. To me, coming into the locker room for the first five minutes after a great win, with a staff you love, and a team you respected, there was nothing like that. That’s what you miss.”
Van Gundy has been leading a U.S. men’s basketball team of mostly G-Leaguers at the FIBA AmeriCup tournament currently taking place in South America. It’s his first real coaching gig since directing Yao Ming, Tracy McGrady and the Houston Rockets of 2006-07.
Since then, he’s been a strong voice for ESPN, working as a color commentator for the NBA’s biggest games.
While this U.S. team is hardly made up of names you know, Van Gundy has the Americans rolling with the likes of Larry Drew II, Xavier Munford, Marshall Plumlee, Kendall Marshall and Reggie Williams.
Does all of it make Van Gundy want to leave the cozy broadcast booth for a return to the NBA, or perhaps even college? Apparently, the answer is yes — but only for the right spot.
“There are certain aspects that I miss of coaching. But you can’t just pick out the good parts,” he told ESPN. “You’ve got to be all-in and understand there’s some negatives too. I like it and feel a responsibility, Man, I want this to be great for the players, and I want us to comport ourselves well and I want us to win.”
The Americans face Argentina in the gold medal game Sunday at 8 p.m. EST. The game will be televised by ESPNU.
You can read Wojnarowski’s entire excellent feature on Van Gundy here.
Here is more from around the world of coaching:
- Former NBA and Rutgers head coach Eddie Jordan is finalizing a deal to join Steve Clifford’s staff with the Charlotte Hornets, according to a report from the Charlotte Observer. Jordan would replace Bob Weiss, who left for an assistant job with the Denver Nuggets.
- Nuggets coach Michael Malone is also adding Orlando Magic assistant David Adelman to his staff, ESPN reported. Adelman is the son of longtime NBA coach Rick Adelman.