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Report: Jeff Van Gundy ‘really badly’ wants to return to coaching

Jeff Van Gundy

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - AUGUST 09: Head coach Jeff Van Gundy of the 2019 USA Men’s Select Team watches players warm up before the 2019 USA Basketball Men’s National Team Blue-White exhibition game at T-Mobile Arena on August 9, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

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A big question surrounding Jeff Van Gundy for years: Does he actually want to coach again?

He won with the Knicks and won with the Rockets. So, he gets linked to other NBA jobs fairly often.

But he also resigned in New York and told Houston he was undecided on continuing (then, following the indecision, got fired by the Rockets). He clearly enjoys working as a TV color commentator. At minimum, he appears quite choosy with coaching vacancies.

Maybe the timing is right to return to the sideline now, though.

Brian Windhorst of ESPN:

All of us know Jeff Van Gundy. He’s a colleague. He really badly wants to get back into coaching.
He’s really tried to reinvigorate his career. He really wants another job, and Houston is his home.

VanGundy was rumored to be favored for the Rockets job. That could explain Houston’s deliberate-looking coaching search.

The Rockets knew for more than a year they’d likely have an opening. What’s taking so long to fill it? Perhaps, they’re waiting for Van Gundy to finish calling the NBA Finals.

If they want Van Gundy and know he’s ready to coach again, the delay would be no problem. In the meantime, Houston can gain information by interviewing other candidates. That search process would also show Van Gundy didn’t undercut Mike D’Antoni.

This all circumstantial. But if we know Van Gundy wants to coach, that’s a big dot for connections.