The New Orleans Pelicans have agreed to terms with Stan Van Gundy to be the team’s next head coach, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Andrew Lopez report.
Van Gundy last coached the Detroit Pistons from 2014-18, when he was also team president. Before that, he coached the Miami Heat from 2003-05 and the Orlando Magic from 2007-12, including leading the Magic to the 2009 NBA Finals.
According to Wojnarowski, the “Pelicans were sold on (VanGundy’s) abilities as a teacher with a young roster, his history of building top defensive teams and his vision for the roster in place.”
VanGundy is joining a Pelicans team on the rise, led by 2019 No. 1 overall pick Zion Williamson and 2020 Most Improved Player Brandon Ingram. There is still work to do though as the team finished the 2019-20 season with a 30-42 record and were not among the 22 clubs invited to finish the season in the Walt Disney World bubble this summer.
The Pelicans fired head coach Alvin Gentry in August after missing the playoffs for the fourth time in five seasons under his leadership.