Charlotte Bobcats Part Ways with Head Coach Paul Silas, Ho Hum

Rob MahoneyNBA Lead WriterApril 30, 2012

CHICAGO, IL - JANUARY 21:  Head coach Paul Silas of the Charlotte Bobcats watches as his team takes on the Chicago Bulls at the United Center on January 21, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bulls defeated the Bobcats 95-89. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Say he's been fired, released, let go or simply that his contract hasn't be renewed. No matter how you flavor it, the result is the same: Paul Silas will not be the head coach of the Charlotte Bobcats next season (per the Associated Press), and whether that's fair or not to Silas himself, it's likely a needed result for a team that aims to purge in a cleansing fire.

But first, the necessary disclaimer. The failures of the 2011-12' Charlotte Bobcats were not Silas' fault. He didn't riddle his roster with holes or injuries, or look to do anything else but compete with the team put before him. He's not an exceptional strategist by any means, but that fact almost seems irrelevant; strategy requires a team usable in some cohesive fashion, and a team requires players of a certain caliber and with legitimate pro-level skill sets.

Charlotte was denied all of that this season by their direction and misfortune, and though Silas seems like a silly choice for a fall man, all things considered, he's not necessarily being made into one.

For NBA teams, there's a very real value in the clean slate. Players and coaches and teams carry reputations with them long past their due, and thus the coach of a losing team can often have a hard time escaping his shadow. Silas' relationship with certain players—oh, hey Tyrus Thomas—had reportedly grown strained by year's end, and when that strain compounded with the fact that next year's team will likely need a new voice as a part of their fresh start (Or fresher start? Did last year's attempted reboot count?), Silas was sent away.

He wasn't fired for the sake of scapegoating. He was fired for the sake of pragmatism. Not all coaches should be let go if their teams encounter a tragic season, but to turn that notion on its head: with the upside of both this particular roster and Silas as a head coach, was there any terribly compelling reason for Charlotte to retain his services?

Silas' contract as a stopgap coach ran its course, and he wasn't asked to return. There's nothing terribly remarkable in that. Even in the land of superlative failure, sometimes a token coaching change is just a token coaching change.