(CBS) After flirting with the Timberwolves, Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger is staying in Memphis,with reports saying a one-on-one conversation with owner Robert Pera helped mend a relationship that was fractured to some degree during the season.
So, this should end any speculation about the Grizzlies being interested in Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau, who was rumored to be a target for Memphis if Joerger exited. For Thibodeau’s sake, it seems best that he never turned his eyes to Memphis — not just because the Bulls are closer to a championship but also because Pera sounds like quite the meddling individual to work under.
In an enlightening piece of reporting, Sports Illustrated’s Chris Mannix shed details on the micro-managing Pera did. It included the owner promising playing time to certain players without consulting Joerger and setting up a publicity stunt one-on-one game pitting himself against Grizzlies guard Tony Allen (which Joerger eventually vetoed). The owner also reportedly wanted to fire Joerger, a first-year coach, just six games into the season.
The real kickers though? From Mannix:
When the Grizzlies opened the season 2-3 — including double-digit defeats to Dallas and New Orleans — Pera flew to Memphis and held individual meetings with players, sources say. He began offering bizarre suggestions. He suggested Mike Miller, a longtime Grizzlies player who was re-signed in the offseason, could become a player-coach. He brought up the idea that Joerger could wear an NFL-style headset and take instructions on the sideline.
So again, good luck Memphis. Sounds like you have everything well in hand.