Ewing, 49, has long desired to be a head coach, and has decried what he viewed as pigeonholing him as a "big man" assistant, a role he has undertaken while an assistant coach in Houston with Yao Ming and in Orlando with Dwight Howard. Ewing has said that he does a lot more than just work with bigs and is ready to run a team. He badly wanted to get a shot with the Knicks, the team for whom he became a superstar after being taken first overall in the 1985 Draft.
"It’s disappointing that I haven’t moved to the next step to getting a head coaching job, but all I can do is keep working hard and keep on preparing myself for whenever that opportunity arises," Ewing told the New York Daily News earlier this month. "A lot of people try to pigeonhole me into just a big man’s coach and I’m just not a big man’s coach. I’m a coach."
Ewing, who now has seven years experience as an NBA assistant, has publicly campaigned for a head coaching job each of the last few years. If the quote that Aldridge cites sounds familiar, it's because Ewing puts the message out there every chance he gets. Here he is a couple of weeks ago:
"It's disappointing that I haven't moved to the next step to get a head coaching job, but all I can do is keep going and move on," Ewing said.
"I'd love to get an interview in New Jersey. I could help them. I'd love to get an interview anywhere,'' he said. "Unfortunately, I haven't gotten one yet. Right now, I'm just looking and learning. But at some point, I have to get over this hump.''
"People keep telling me to be patient, and I am because I'm really liking this, but I think I deserve a shot at a head coaching job,'' Ewing said Monday ... "I really don't know why someone won't take a chance. I've paid my dues.''
[...] "Maybe I'm being typecast. I don't know, but I'm not a big man's coach. I'm a coach involved in all phases of this game,'' he said. "I've worked for, and played under, a lot of good coaches. And I've taken bits and pieces from all of them.''
There's plenty more out there -- I just got tired of looking.
I'm not sure if Dumars gave Ewing a courtesy interview or if Ewing is a serious candidate, but there's something about how entitled Ewing (and for years, Mark Jackson) comes across that drives me nuts. There are exactly 30 head coaching jobs in the NBA, the most prestigious league in the world. It's more exclusive than the U.S. Senate -- you don't get a chance to join the club simply because you've paid your dues. Figure out a way to distinguish yourself and let your body of work do the talking.
Hat-tip to The Detroit Sports Site