Rod Thorn is looking around for a new coach with some fire. Del Negro doesn't back down from management.
The Nets might not like the heated confrontation Del Negro had with vice president of basketball operations John Paxson. On March 30 Paxson had confrontation with Del Negro over the playing time Joakim Noah, then recovering from a foot injury. The argument resulted in Paxson pushing Del Negro away, according to sources, after Del Negro got to close to Paxson.
Team sources also said Del Negro had come around the desk of general manager Gar Foreman in a threatening manner during a heated discussion earlier in the season. Del Negro denied both accounts but it was clear that a shaky relationship with management had become irreparable.
Del Negro enjoyed a margin of support from friends and acquaintances like Reggie Miller and Charles Barkley speaking on his behalf on the national broadcast of the playoffs. Also, some Bulls were critical of the way the team strung out Del Negro's last months despite his second straight season leading the team to the playoffs.
I know the Nets are interested in Jeff Van Gundy, Tom Thibodeau, and Phil Jackson. New ownership should look at Del Negro. The Bulls made the playoffs for two years straight under Vinny Del Negro.