They want to hire Marc Iavaroni -- but only after they talk to Nate McMillan. I'll pause here to let you bang your head on your desk for a minute.
You must be joking. Nate McMillan? I'd say it's safe to describe Mo Cheeks as a "poor man's Nate McMillan". Cheeks would be graded about a D- on the X's and O's, and a B on player relationships. McMillan is a C and B+. Do we really want something in the same mold as what doesn't work? I find this type of thing very frustrating. You've got a chance to snag one of the hotter assistant coaches in the league, who has tremendous experience (he's been an assistant under D'Antoni, Pat Riley, and Mike Fratello, and played for Pete Newell), is known for developing guys at the same position as your best player, and you're holding off on it because you want to talk to a guy who's had one good season in four years. McMillan "wasn't the team's X and O's guy", and you can't even speak with him for another two weeks. Additionally, Iavaroni gets the indignation of knowing he's the third choice. Argh. I can't decide if I should be happy that they're interested in Iavaroni or furious because Nate McMillan is the roadblock.
True Hoop's Henry Abbott has a good take on the situation:
I'm sorry the Blazers have to go through this creepily unprofessional hiring ritual. Now the system is set up to make it clear to everyone that, should Marc Iavaroni become their head coach, we all know he was the second choice. They're starting him out damaged in the eyes of players and fans.What do you think? I'm curious to hear from the readers on this one. I spent a few years in Seattle while McMillan was coach there, and wasn't impressed with much outside of his warddrobe. In any event, let me know some of your thoughts and I'll post the good responses on the site.