In his press conference today, Joe Dumars said that the three guys on his list right now are Michael Curry, Terry Porter (assuming he doesn't get the Phoenix job) and Avery Johnson. Stephen A. Smith swears that Curry will get the job, but when talking with Stoney and Wojo, Dumars scoffed at the notion that a decision was already made and seemed downright annoyed that someone was saying otherwise. Other people have suggested Jeff Van Gundy, which, if you can look past his agitating Pistons fans as an announcer, actually makes a bit of sense.
But here's a name I'm surprised no one has mentioned: what about Tom Izzo?
You want intensity? Check. Someone who can coach defense? Check. Authority over a locker room? Considering the size of the contract it'd take to pry him away from Michigan State, you better believe players will know who holds the upper-hand.
Hell, he's one of the few coaches who could walk into this job and automatically be more popular than most of his players (and mind you, this is coming from a University of Michigan alum who loathes giving the folks from East Lansing any more credit than they're due).
I know, I know; he's just a college coach, and we all know how those turn out. But given his multiple Final Four appearances and proven track record of excellence, you have to give him the benefit of the doubt against a guy like Curry who has but a single year of coaching at any level under his belt.
I can think of all sorts of reasons why this won't happen -- namely, Izzo has a good thing going at MSU and is in no hurry to leave -- but I also can't think of another move, whether it's a coaching change or big-ticket trade, that would invigorate the fan base like his arrival. He wouldn't be cheap, but the new season ticket orders might cover his salary his very first week on the job. Honestly, there's no reason I can think of for this not to happen.
What do you think?