Sampson interviews in Houston
Former OU coach Kelvin Sampson said the past two years his goal is to become an NBA head coach. According to reports in Houston, Sampson is interviewing Tuesday for the Houston Rockets vacancy.
Because of his five-year NCAA ban following infractions at OU and Indiana, Sampson has little choice but to stay in the NBA.
Could he succeed as an NBA head coach? It’s impossible to answer.
Most college coaches, including Lon Kruger, recently hired at OU, haven’t fared well. Rick Pitino and John Calipari proved in the NBA that they do their best work on campuses.
But there have been a handful over the years that have won at both levels, the most obvious being Larry Brown and Chuck Daly.
Anyone who followed the Sooners knows Sampson should fare well in his interview. Sampson has a knack for pursuading people to see things from his point of view.
One factor in his favor is most candidates being mentioned are assistants. Sampson’s head coaching experience, even though it’s on the college level, should help. Having a couple of years NBA experience also is a plus.
Sampson is in a good situation in Milwaukee. The Bucks have been competetive with a sub-par roster. Star players are mandatory to win in the NBA but Scott Skiles and his staff have shown solid coaching can make a difference.
Don’t expect any revelation after Sampson’s interview. The Rockets are expected to take their time. Sampson might be first candidate to interview but Rockets general manager Daryl Morey is expected to talk to several coaches.
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