The New Orleans Pelicans have found their next head coach.
Stan Van Gundy, 61, agreed to join the Pelicans on Wednesday afternoon,¬†announcing his decision¬†on Twitter.
“I’m excited to join a talented New Orleans Pelicans team,” Van Gundy said on Twitter. “It will be an honor to work with our players and to work for Mrs. Benson and David Griffin, Trajan Langdon, their staff and the great people of New Orleans. I can’t wait to talk to our players and get the process started.”
The Pelicans ended 13th in the Western Conference with a 30-42 record and missed out on the playoffs after going 2-6 in the NBA’s restart in Orlando. Despite the unsatisfactory finish, Van Gundy inherits one of the most exciting young rosters in the NBA, headlined by Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram.
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In 12 seasons as a head coach, Van Gundy amassed a 523-384 (.577) regular-season record and 48-43 (.527) playoff record in the NBA, according to¬†Basketball-Reference.com.
Van Gundy brings plenty of experience to the Pelicans.
He spent four seasons as head coach and president of basketball operations for the Detroit Pistons. He was relieved of his duties in 2018, and has not coached in the NBA since.
Before his stint with the Pistons, he was the head coach of the Miami Heat from 2003 to 2006, and the Orlando Magic from 2007 to 2012. With the Magic, he helped lead the team to the NBA Finals during the 2008-09 NBA season, where they lost to the Los Angeles Lakers.
Van Gundy served as a game analyst for Turner Sports during the 2020 NBA playoffs. He will replace former Pelicans head coach Alvin Gentry, and is the seventh head coach in franchise history.
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