HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – Spend 20 minutes talking basketball with Lawrence Frank and I promise you, it’s impossible not to be both impressed with his knowledge of the game and won over by his straight-shooter personality.
Spend the same amount of time with former Hawks coach Mike Woodson and I guarantee you’d come away feeling the same way. When the Detroit Pistons’ coaching search came down to Frank and Woodson as their final two candidates, there was no way they could lose, right?
Try telling that to Pistons fans (I’m Michigan born and bred, so I’ve got more than a few Pistons diehards dangling from the family tree), who from what we could gather didn’t seem particularly enthused about any of the options they were presented.
Still, for a franchise in need of a strong personality in that head coach’s chair, after several years of misses, Frank offers offer the qualities needed to deal with a young roster that needs shaping.
His selection over Woodson, an offer is coming soon as first reported by Yahoo! Sports, signals more than just an apparent shift in philosophy — the Pistons’ last three coaches have all had some connection to the organization, either player or assistant coach, prior to taking over the top bench job. It’s also a sign of the influence the new ownership group is placing in the hands of Dave Checketts, hired as a consultant by new owner Tom Gores to advise and assist alongside Pistons president Joe Dumars.
Franchises wish the process was as simple the brain trust coming together and choosing between two worthy candidates that also happen to be ideal fits.
But we all know that the only thing tougher than lucking into a transcendent talent at the top of a draft is finding the right coach for the right team at just the right time.