Rockets HC Rumors: Tyronn Lue, Jeff Van Gundy, John Lucas Among Interviewees

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistOctober 9, 2020

Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Tyronn Lue yells instructions to players in the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Indiana Pacers, Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Tony Dejak/Associated Press

The Houston Rockets are casting a wide net in their search for a new head coach, with at least three candidates expected to interview in the near future. 

Per Marc Stein of the New York Times, Tyronn Lue will meet with the Rockets next week; ESPN analyst Jeff Van Gundy and Rockets player development coach John Lucas also have interviews scheduled at some point. 

Per Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle, the Rockets "moved halfway through their expected initial six interviews" after speaking with Denver Nuggets assistant Wes Unseld Jr. on Wednesday. 

Feigen noted Houston also interviewed Dallas Mavericks assistant Stephen Silas and former Brooklyn Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson. 

The Rockets are in the market for a new head coach after Mike D'Antoni announced on Sept. 13 he wouldn't be returning. They were eliminated from the playoffs in the second round by the Los Angeles Lakers in five games. 

Lucas has been in his current role with the Rockets since 2016. Van Gundy spent four seasons as Houston's head coach from 2003-07. He's worked as a television analyst for ESPN since being fired by the Rockets.

Lue, who served as an assistant with the Los Angeles Clippers this season, has been rumored to be the favorite to replace Doc Rivers. It's unclear where things stand between the two at this point. 

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ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported last week it's "not a foregone conclusion" that Lue will end up with Los Angeles: "I'm told he's going to meet with New Orleans soon. Houston wants to talk him."

The Rockets would seem like an appealing destination for coaching candidates. They have won the Southwest Division in each of the last three years and have two All-Stars in James Harden and Russell Westbrook on their roster.