Rick Pitino wants to be an NBA coach again


Rick Pitino might not be done coaching just yet.

About a month after telling ESPN that he’s “finished coaching,” Pitino informed the network he’s hired an agent with the hopes of landing a head-coaching job in the NBA as early as this spring.

“I just want to be a part of an organization,” said Pitino, who was fired by Louisville last fall as the school’s basketball program was being investigated as part of a federal corruption probe.

“I want to develop young players. I want to be part of a team. I miss it terribly. I’m using this time to really study the NBA. If something opens up with a young basketball team, I’d have deep interest in it.”


Pitino has coached two teams to national titles — Kentucky in 1996 and Louisville in 2013 (that championship was later vacated after an NCAA investigation into allegations of parties that involved sex acts for players and recruits arranged by a staff member).

His two stints as an NBA coach were much less successful. He had just one winning season in five-plus years at the helm of the New York Knicks (1987-89) and Boston Celtics (1998-2001).

With the Celtics, Pitino also held the title of team president. But he told ESPN he has no interest in such a dual role at this point.

“I’m not looking for any of that [power/control] at this stage of my life,” Pitino said. “I want to develop teams and develop players and build a winner. I value analytics. I want to fit into an organization. At this stage, that’s all I’m interested in.”

Pitino said he has hired prominent NFL agent Drew Rosenhaus, whose company also represents two NBA players.

“I think the league is going to get younger and player development will become even more important to every organization,” Pitino said. “That’s my forte. I believe I can help an organization find a pathway to success.”


Twitter: @chewkiii