The struggling Charlotte Bobcats have officially hired St John’s College assistant coach Mike Dunlap to replace Paul Silas at the helm of the down and out franchise after months of talks with several candidates.
Since Silas’ sacking, there has been much speculation as to who would take over the job and begin to help the Bobcats fight their way into a competitive position within the league. Jerry Sloan, Brian Shaw and Quin Snyder were just three names being flown around as possible candidates for the position.
However this morning it was announced that Mike Dunlap, 2-time NCAA division Champion and ex-Coach Of The Year, would be residing over the team at the start of the 2012/13 season. Previous to working at St John’s, Dunlap worked at the Denver Nuggets under George Karl in the NBA where over two seasons the team recorded a win loss percentage of .579 and a Playoff birth in 2007/8. He then spent time with Arizona in the NCAA where he propelled his team to the semi finals and a 21-14 record. In the mid 1990′s, Dunlap completed 2 seasons at the helm of Australian National Basketball League team the Adelaide 36ers. ’94 to ’96 saw the 36ers go runners up and semi finalists respectively in the NBL before Dunlap returned to the United States for personal reasons.
Whilst there is little doubt that Dunlap is a coach with the ability to help teams succeed, the question remains, will he be able to help turn around the misfortune that has befallen the Bobcats? Will he be able to pull this team out of the depths they sunk to in 2011/12?
Only time will tell.