76ers assistant Michael Curry may garner interest around NBA

Posted: April 21, 2013

Interest in 76ers associate head coach Michael Curry from other teams with coaching vacancies "will be high," according to league source with knowledge of the situation.

On Thursday, when Doug Collins resigned his post as head coach after three seasons, majority owner Josh Harris acknowledged that Curry would be among the candidates to interview for the vacancy. Collins and the team agreed that Collins would move into an advisory role with the team.

On the same day that Collins resigned, Cleveland and Detroit fired their coaches, Byron Scott and Lawrence Frank, respectively. However, there could be more openings soon in Charlotte (Mike Dunlap), Sacramento (Keith Smart), Minnesota (Rick Adelman), and Toronto (Duane Casey). Additionally, Brooklyn (P.J. Carlesimo), Phoenix (Lindsey Hunter), and Milwaukee (Jim Boylan) have interim coaches.

It is believed that some veteran coaches who did not work this season (Jeff Van Gundy, Stan Van Gundy, and perhaps even Phil Jackson) could be looking to get back into coaching.

However, the source said on Friday that some teams will look to younger coaches, such as Curry, who have started to develop good reputations around the league. While the Sixers had trouble scoring this season, they have been a solid defensive team since Curry, who is responsible for that defense, joined the staff.

"I think that he likes it in Philadelphia," said the source, who works in the front office for a Southeast Division team. "He's a great defensive mind. I wouldn't be surprised if Philadelphia wanted to keep him in-house. The young guys know him, and I think they respect his voice."

Last summer, Curry emerged as a finalist for the job in Orlando that ultimately went to Jacque Vaughn. A late entrant into the competition for that job, Curry is believed to have interviewed very well.

While Harris has said that he and general manager Tony DiLeo will helm the search, Collins, a huge fan of Curry's, endorsed his assistant for the position on Thursday. Collins also said he believed he will play some role in naming the new coach.

"I'd love for guys to get a look because I think we have some incredible guys," Collins said when asked whether anyone on his staff should be considered for the job. "Michael Curry has been a head coach before. What he has done here defensively and how he has grown. Michael is ready."

Before Curry joined the Sixers as Collins' assistant in 2010, he guided the Pistons to a 43-39 record and into the playoffs in his one season as a head coach. He was fired by Detroit after that season.

Contact John N. Mitchell at  jmitchell@philly.com. Follow on Twitter @JmitchInquirer.

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