In an odd twist of role reversal, P.J. Carlesimo and Scott Brooks will reunite at Chesapeake Energy Arena on Wednesday at 7 p.m.
Carlesimo coached the first 13 games of the Thunder’s history before being replaced on an interim basis by Brooks. Now it’s Carlesimo who wears the interim tag as the man in charge of the Brooklyn Nets following last Thursday’s firing of coach Avery Johnson.
Thunder fans barely got to know Carlesimo, who went 20-62 in the Seattle SuperSonics’ final season (2007-08) and 1-12 at the outset of the inaugural season in OKC (2008-09). Brooks then did the exact same thing, starting out 1-12 after replacing Carlesimo and slipping to 2-17 before closing out the season with a far more respectable 20-30 mark.
In May of 2010, Carlesimo granted an interview, but only after the Thunder season had concluded so anything he said wouldn’t be a distraction. After OKC wound up losing to the defending world champion Los Angeles Lakers 4-2 in the opening round of the playoffs, Carlesimo delivered with his usual candor in a story you can read here.
- John Rohde