Lionel Hollins out as Grizzlies' head coach - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Lionel Hollins out as Grizzlies' head coach

Posted: Updated:
Hollins took over a struggling Grizzlies squad in 2009. The team has improved every year since. Hollins took over a struggling Grizzlies squad in 2009. The team has improved every year since.
Hollins owns an overall career head coaching record of 214-201, including two stints as Grizzlies interim head coach. Hollins owns an overall career head coaching record of 214-201, including two stints as Grizzlies interim head coach.
  • Also on WMCTV.COMMore>>

  • Fans rally for Grizzlies’ Coach Hollins

    Fans rally for Grizzlies’ Coach Hollins

    Saturday, June 8 2013 8:24 PM EDT2013-06-09 00:24:57 GMT
    (WMC-TV) – An outpouring of support for Grizzlies Coach Lionel Hollins was seen on Saturday. Dozens of supporters held an impromptu rally in downtown Memphis to urge the franchise to re-sign Hollins. ThereMore >>
    An outpouring of support for Grizzlies Coach Lionel Hollins was seen on Saturday. Dozens of supporters held an impromptu rally in downtown Memphis to urge the franchise to re-sign Hollins.More >>
  • Grizzlies coaching search continues

    Grizzlies coaching search continues

    Thursday, June 6 2013 11:30 PM EDT2013-06-07 03:30:46 GMT
    The Memphis Grizzlies head coaching search took another turn on Thursday, as the Denver Nuggets parted ways with the 2012-2013 NBA Coach of the Year, George Karl. According to multiple media outlets,More >>
    The Memphis Grizzlies head coaching search took another turn on Thursday, as the Denver Nuggets parted ways with the 2012-2013 NBA Coach of the Year, George Karl.More >>
  • Grizzlies Head Coach: 'I don't have any intention of going anywhere'

    Grizzlies Head Coach: 'I don't have any intention of going anywhere'

    Tuesday, June 4 2013 10:21 AM EDT2013-06-04 14:21:54 GMT
    (WMC-TV) - After coaching a history-making Grizzlies team, Head Coach Lionel Hollins could be looking to leave the team and the Bluff City – according to national reports. But Monday morning, Hollins toldMore >>
    After coaching a history-making Grizzlies team, Head Coach Lionel Hollins could be looking to leave the team and the Bluff City – according to national reports. But Monday morning, Hollins told a local radio station he wants to coach the Grizzlies.More >>
MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC-TV) - The Memphis Grizzlies announced Monday that the team will not offer head coach Lionel Hollins a new contract when it expires June 30.

"On behalf of the Grizzlies organization I would like to thank Lionel for his service and hard work in helping this organization throughout his years in Vancouver and Memphis," said Memphis Grizzlies CEO and managing partner Jason Levien in a press release. "Lionel, the coaching staff, the players and the organization achieved new heights this season with our run to the Western Conference Finals and for that, we are grateful. The entire Grizzlies family wishes Lionel all the best and great success as he moves forward in his career."

Hollins and Grizzlies management struggled with so-called "philosophical differences" despite the Grizzlies finishing with their best record in franchise history this past season. What has widely been described as these "philosophical differences" goes back to the change in management after the team was sold by former owner Michael Heisley to the new owner Robert Pera and his group in November. Jason Levien was brought in as team CEO and managing general partner. Levien brought in stats oriented front office men like former ESPN Analyst and writer John Hollinger.

The two styles clashed with Hollins being "Old School" coaching by feel. Hollins lobbied against trading leading scorer Rudy Gay, wanting to keep the core of starters together that turned in the NBA's best start this season.

The trade went down and Hollins publicly talked of the team having "champagne taste on a beer budget." He then re-focused the Grizzlies on a stretch run that was the league's best after the All-Star break at 23-8.

Hollins told Action News 5's Jarvis Greer on the phone Monday that he wanted to thank the previous Grizzlies owner, Michael Heisley, for giving him the chance to be a head coach. Also, Hollins wanted to thank all Memphis Grizzlies fans for support.

The 22-year NBA coaching veteran was an original member of the Vancouver franchise and was a staple on the coaching sidelines for 10 of its first 12 seasons.

Hollins also served as the club's interim head coach on two separate occasions. Hollins guided Vancouver to an 18-42 finish in 1999-2000, replacing Brian Hill after the team started the season 4-18, and again took over for four games in 2004-2005 following the resignation of Hall of Famer Hubie Brown.

Hollins owns an overall career head coaching record of 214-201, including two stints as Grizzlies interim head coach. In 35 career playoff games, he holds an overall record of 18-17.

Now that the speculation is over and Hollins will not be staying with the team, Grizzlies fans of all ages are questioning the organization's decision to go in a different direction.

"That's stupid ... because they're losing all the knowledge that took them to the playoffs," said Grizzlies fan Rico Howard.

Grizzlies management said once the contract expires it will be effectively immediately and Hollins will no longer be with the organization.

"We have begun to identify our next head coach, who we feel can best move us forward," said Levien.

Next for Hollins is the job interview circuit. He will meet with the L.A. Clippers Wednesday, and the Denver Nuggets later this week.

Copyright 2013 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow