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Rick Pitino Wants to Return to NBA Coaching

In a surprise announcement, former NBA coach Rick Pitino has declared his candidacy for head coach openings in the spring.

After being fired as a result of an FBI probe at Louisville, Rick Pitino isn’t ready to give basketball up. It’s a U Turn from Rick Pitino, who told EPSN that he was “finished coaching” in September.

“I just want to be a part of an organization,” Pitino said.

“I want to develop young players, I want to be part of a team, I miss it terribly. I’m using this time to really study the NBA. If something opens up with a young basketball team, I’d have deep interest in it.”


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“I think the league is going to get younger and player development will become even more important to every organization. That’s my forte. I believe I can help an organization find a pathway to success.”

Pitino, 66, clearly doesn’t believe that he has become too controversial to hire. He presided over a number of scandals at Louisville.

The FBI probe found that payments were made to the family of former Louisville recruit Brian Bowen. Uncovered tapes from the probe, however, indicate that he had no knowledge of it.

As well as that, the NCAA investigated the use of prostitutes and strippers in recruiting visits with players.


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In an effort to raise his chances, Pitino has hired a high-profile NFL agent in Drew Rosenhaus. Rosenhaus represents two NBA players – Portland’s first-round pick Anfernee Simons and Clippers center Montrezl Harrell.

Amidst structural changes in NBA franchises, questions arise as to whether Pitino is suitable for a general manager role. As well as that, his ego could be a potential barrier to fitting into an organization.

Although Pitino, understandably, played this down as an issue.

“I’m not looking for any of that [power/control] at this stage of my life,” Pitino told ESPN. “I want to develop teams and develop players and build a winner. I value analytics, I want to fit into an organization. At this stage, that’s all I’m interested in.”

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