JOE PRUNTY IN LINE FOR GB COACHING GIG

british_basketball_new_logo_568Great Britain’s men could find out their new coach next week, with Cleveland Cavaliers assistant Joe Prunty set to be named in charge, according to sources in the NBA.

MVP has learnt that final contractual arrangements are likely to be signed off following Easter Weekend to name a successor to Chris Finch, following an extensive recruitment process arranged, somewhat controversially, by an external agency.

Prunty, whose only head coaching experience has been in summer leagues, is in his third year on the bench of the Cavaliers after spells with Portland, Dallas and San Antonio.

However he has no experience of the European game and is a left-field choice to lead GB into this summer’s EuroBasket, with current assistant coach Paul Mokeski and Maccabi Tel Aviv assistant Guy Goodes among those understood to have applied.

joe_pruntyBritish Basketball’s performance manager Warwick Cann refused to deny that Prunty (right) was in line for the job but he confirmed that a deal is expected to be finalised with their preferred candidate within seven days.

“Things are confidential right now because contracts are with our agency,” Cann said. “As you’d expect, British Basketball would respect that confidentiality. We do expect things to be done within the next week.”

News of Prunty’s impending appointment was met with shock by a number of current internationals who had expected someone with prior working knowledge of international basketball to take charge.

“I cant believe we are considering an NBA guy with no European experience,” said one member of the 2012 Olympic team, speaking to MVP on condition of anonymity.

“I was hoping for a Euro coach that would teach the guys not just compete. That really is disappointing. I thought for sure they would want a fresh start and create a more European-style team.”

The Cavaliers did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Cann confirmed, additionally, that a deal to appoint a new Under-20 men national coach is imminent after interviews with a short-listed group of candidates.

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