At least according to Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski, who filed the following Saturday:
No final decision has officially been reached, nor are contract negotiations underway, but McHale has clearly separated himself from Dallas Mavericks assistant Dwane Casey and Boston Celtics assistant Lawrence Frank, sources said. McHale made a strong final impression in conversations with Houston officials on Thursday in Chicago, and could receive a formal offer in the next week.
Hmmm, this sounds really familiar. A couple of accomplished, deeply respected assistants look overmatched in comparison to a charismatic former player with his own fair share of past success (though not as a coach). Man, it’s like Dwane Casey is the new… Dwane Casey. The same thing has happened to Casey twice as the charming, hilariously inept Vinny Del Negro has scooped up multiple jobs for which the two competed, as VDN went on to stumble as the Bulls coach only to recover with the Clippers last year. Larry Drew also won out over Casey this last summer for the Hawks job, but at least Drew was previously an assistant and did a pretty solid job of getting the most out of that team (even rolling at full steam, Atlanta and its potential likely max out at “feisty second-round exit”). In each of those scenarios, I always wondered what the hell could be going on in these interviews that invariably seemed to be putting Casey on the backburner. Here, I find myself wondering the same thing.