Although he stresses he's happy not coaching, former Orlando Magic and Miami Heat coach Stan Van Gundy appears to be leaving the door at least slightly ajar for a possible return to the NBA as coach of the Golden State Warriors.
Asked Thursday morning on 740 AM's "Open Mike" show if he's talked with the Warriors about their vacant head-coaching job, Van Gundy answered, "I have not met with them or anything else. There have been calls to gauge interest, and until you get a chance to actually talk to somebody, it's even hard to say if they're interested or if I would be [interested]. So we're not at that point of even sitting down and talking yet."
On Tuesday, the Warriors fired Mark Jackson after three seasons as their head coach.
Although TNT commentator Steve Kerr has been mentioned as the leading candidate for Golden State's job opening, Van Gundy also has been mentioned as a potential candidate.
Van Gundy hasn't coached in the NBA since the Magic fired him in May 2012 after five successful seasons. This past season, he worked as a color commentator for televised college basketball games and as a color commentator for ESPN Radio's NBA broadcasts. He has said he and his family are happy in Central Florida and he has indicated he doesn't want to uproot his family before his children complete high school.
On Thursday morning, Van Gundy was asked whether he wants to return to coaching.
"Part of me does, and part of me doesn't," Van Gundy answered. "Look, we're so happy in Central Florida. It would really have to be a great situation for me to get back in. I miss a lot of it. I really do. I miss the competition. I miss the challenge. I miss the camaraderie of it. But I also like the time that I've had, so we'll just have to see what happens. You weigh every situation."
Jackson compiled a 121-109 regular-season record with the Warriors, including a 51-31 record during the 2013-14 season.
Jackson also led the Warriors to two consecutive playoff appearances. Golden State, playing without injured center Andrew Bogut, lost in the first round of the 2014 NBA playoffs in seven games to the Los Angeles Clippers.
Kerr, who has never been a head coach, is being pursued by the New York Knicks for the Knicks' head-coaching job. The Knicks' basketball operations now are being run by former Chicago Bulls coach Phil Jackson, who used to coach Kerr.
The Warriors job would seem to be especially attractive to any potential coach. Golden State’s nucleus of players includes All-Star point guard Stephen Curry as well as shooting guard Klay Thompson and small forward
Van Gundy grew up in the Bay Area. He was a fan of the Warriors.
"Names come up on every job, and my name's been mentioned in a few," Van Gundy said. "But I think the Warrior one comes up because I'm from out there. I went to high school in the Bay Area. I grew up out there. I said several times during my coaching career when we would go play out there that it was always important to me playing out there because I grew up [there].
"That arena is old, so it was the same arena, and when I was a sophomore in high school, the Warriors won the NBA championship in 1975 led by Rick Barry. Al Attles was their coach. I was a huge fan, and everybody knows that, and so I think that's why my name comes up when it's associated with that job in particular."