John Calipari has embedded his name as one of the most prominent names in College basketball coaching, so why would he want out now?
John Wall, Karl-Anthony Towns, Anthony Davis, Demarcus Cousins; these are just a few of the names John Calipari has coached in recent years. Calipari has had an immense amount of success as a college coach; last season his team finished 32-6, with an elite 8 appearance where they lost to the eventual National Champions, the University of North Carolina Tar Heels.
He may feel this is the time.
The time of one-and-done players is coming to an end. NBA President Adam Silver has been quoted saying “My sense is it’s not working for anyone.” Adam Silver seems to be working proactively to change this rule; this rule change would be detrimental to John Calipari’s success as a college coach.
Coach Cal’s pitch to potential players is that they can come to Kentucky, do their required year, then become a lottery pick in the next year’s draft; this is enticing for players who have to abide by the NBA’s current one-and-done rule. If this rule was not in effect, Calipari would not have access to the talent he is accustomed to.
John Calipari is currently signed to a 7 year deal worth over $50 Million. It is rumored that back in 2014 he turned down a deal to coach the Cleveland Cavaliers for $80 Million. Calipari turned down the opportunity to coach one of the greatest players of all time, for more money, but now he wants to join a Knicks organization that is in shambles and has chewed up and spit out people who once had very successful roles in the NBA, like Phil Jackson and Donnie Walsh.
Something is up.
John Calipari has tried to translate his college success to the NBA before. Calipari coached the New Jersey Nets for three seasons, spoiler alert: they were not good. The nets had a combined winning percentage of .391%, leaving many with the perception that Calipari’s could only be successful at the college level.
The knicks roster is subpar, and their prospect of getting legitimate firepower this offseason is highly unlikely. This job is a tough sell for anyone who doesn’t have anything to prove. Calipari seemingly has everything to lose and nothing to gain from a potential role with the Knicks, but some of his insecurities have been put on display by his interest in this role.
Calipari has denied any interest in the role with the Knicks; Cal went to twitter to say that no one has contacted the Knicks organization. Whether or not he did have someone contact the Knicks, it is very possible that this rumor had some substance, and Calipari may be keeping his options open.
Our thoughts are that Calipari is feeling the heat from the potential one-and-done rule change, and he wants to leave on top. It will be intriguing to see if Calipari will aggressively pursue another chance in the NBA.