He’s put in 14 years as an assistant, but he faces a tough task in his first head coaching job -- turning the worst team in the NBA back into a winner. The former Phoenix assistant was hired lst Thursday as coach of the Memphis Grizzlies, who went 22-60 last season after three straight trips to the NBA playoffs.
He said he knows how to reverse that slide. "I've always been noted for my enthusiasm, my passion for the game," he said. "Hell, I told Ralph Samson to get his head out of his ass damn near every day when I was just a freshman in college.” 'By the way, what's up with the UVA/Puerto Rico fiasco?"
Iavaroni vowed to return the "sense of competition" the Grizzlies seem to have misplaced. "You compete in a drill. You compete in a scrimmage. You compete in a preseason game. You compete in one minute or you compete in 41 minutes. That's going to be a trademark of our team," Iavaroni said at a news conference to announce his hiring.
(Is it us, or does that sound a lot like Norv Turner?)