P.J. Carlesimo, eight years removed from being a head coach in the NBA, was hired today by the Seattle SuperSonics to help lead the team back into the playoff picture in the Western Conference. Carlesimo acquires a very young team that will be centered around #2 overall pick Kevin Durant and #5 pick Jeff Green from this year’s draft. Within the last week, the Sonics traded their leading scorer from last season, Ray Allen, to the Boston Celtics and allowed their second-option, Rashard Lewis, to walk away and sign with the Orlando Magic.
While also coaching the Portland Trail Blazers and the Golden State Warriors, Carlesimo has a sub-.500 winning percentage to date, going 183-222 in parts of six NBA seasons. He spent the past five years as an assistant with the San Antonio Spurs, where new Sonics GM Sam Presti also came from.
Carlesimo may be most famous for being the victim of Latrell Sprewell’s choking attack during a Golden State Warriors practice in 1997. It is said that if Sprewell had not been pulled off of the coach, he would have wound up killing him. As a result, Carlesimo got a reputation that he was not good to his players; nonetheless, everyone knows that Latrell Sprewell is a lunatic, which is part of the reason why he has not played in the NBA since 2005.