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Dunleavy's Extension

I've had some time to reflect on it while waiting on other developments, and I've re-read what I said about Dunleavy's extension when it was originally reported two weeks ago.  Basically, what I wrote before still applies, so if you want the long version, go there.  

The Clippers did not release the terms, but Ric Bucher of ESPN the Magazine originally reported that the deal was for 5 years and $25M.  Everything else I've seen or heard, including the original story two weeks ago, says that the deal is for 4 years, and that's what I believe.  Jason Reid's story in the LA Times puts the money at $5.6M per year.  From Reid's story:

Excluding coaches who also have other player-personnel titles or part ownership of teams, Dunleavy becomes "one of the top four or five" paid coaches in the league, said Andy Roeser, executive vice president.

OK.  I had Jackson, Popovich, Riley, Sloan and McMillan making more, which would put Dunleavy 6th, but Riley certainly has other titles, and I don't know about the others, so fair enough.

The team is not playing well right now.  Strike that.  The team is playing very poorly right now.  And recent games against Popovich's Spurs, Sloan's Jazz and Jackson's Lakers have shown us what well-coached teams look like (we're 0-6 against those guys).  So it is with trepidation that I ponder the prospect of Dunleavy coaching the Clippers until 2011.  But it would be a mistake to focus only on 21 games in 2006, and ignore the 9 and 10 win improvements each year he's been the coach.  

He works very hard.  He prepares for every game.  He is an excellent defensive coach.  That's all true.  Unfortunately, I am not convinced that he is a great offensive coach.  He can draw up a play for a situation, but the overall half court scheme is limited.  The team is far too dependent on trying to exploit one-on-one matchups.  Dunleavy freely admits to being a defense-first kind of guy.  That's fine.  But you still need to play offense when you have the ball.

He's the 6th highest paid coach right now, but there are about 10 guys clustered right below him.  As extensions are signed, as new coaches are hired, he's going to fall back into the pack a little.  The money is really just a bit over the median, and he's earned that with the way the team performed over the first three years of his tenure.  If this deal had been signed in October, no one would have had an issue with it.

So this minor distraction is behind the team, and hopefully another distraction will be resolved very soon also.  And then it will be time for him to earn this new contract.  

And maybe come up with a half-court offense.