An unemployed and well-known NBA player-turned-coach could soon find a job.
Yesterday, it was confirmed that longtime Chicago Bulls assistant Pete Myers would not return to the coach's bench when the organization welcomes new head coach Tom Thibodeau this season. Myers, who had been a member of the coaching staff since December 28, 2001, will instead fill another role for the team yet to be determined.
Before the exit of Myers, Thibodeau had already recruited two assistants to replace Bernie Bickerstaff and Bob Ociepka, who will both join head coach Nate McMillan with the Portland Trail Blazers. Former Northern Illinois head coach Andy Greer and veteran NBA assistant Ron Adams will become members of the Bulls staff for the 2010-2011 season. A familiar name is emerging as Thibodeau's third assistant.
According to several reports, Terry Porter, a former NBA player and head coach, is being considered as a replacement for the departing Pete Myers.
Porter was a well-respect point guard in the NBA from 1985 to 2002, most well-known for his 10-year stretch with the Trail Blazers who appeared in the Finals twice during that time. After retiring with the San Antonio Spurs in 2002, he turned to coaching, taking an assistant job with the Sacramento Kings.
Just as season later, Porter was named head coach of his hometown Milwaukee Bucks on August 6, 2003. In his first season, he lead a formidable Bucks roster to an even record. However, they were eliminated in the first round by the eventual champion Detroit Pistons in the first round of the playoffs. His sophomore season as skipper was not as successful, being fired after a lackluster 30-52 effort by the Bucks.
After a lone season as Detroit Pistons assistant in 2006, Terry Porter was hired as Mike D'Antoni's successor as Phoenix Suns head coach on June 9, 2008. After a respectable 28-23 start, he was released by the Suns organization, a move that was widely criticized by NBA analysts and fans alike. The Bulls assistant position would be his first NBA duty since he was fired in Phoenix.
If signed, Porter, a two-time NBA All-Star who retired with over 15,000 points and 7,000 assists, will compliment Tom Thibodeau's "defense creates offense" strategy and will be a very positive influence on ever-improving star and potential franchise player Derrick Rose.
Randy Brown, a player development coach with Chicago since the summer of 2009, could be called on as an assistant as well after two impressive summers working with hopeful NBA rookies. Brown, however, might not be willing to relinquish his current job with the organization.
In addition to completing their coaching staff, the Chicago Bulls have been weighing their options in acquiring a back-up shooting guard. As the chances of signing seven-time All-Star two-guard Tracy McGrady become increasingly bleak, contenders for the open roster spot include free agents Keith Bogans, Shannon Brown, and Roger Mason, and Portland swingman Rudy Fernandez, who has been made available for trades.
Both a shooting guard and multiple assistant coaches are expected to be signed very shortly along with the impending announcement of Terry Porter's hiring.