Report: Pistons down to 3 finalists for head coaching job

Former UConn coach Kevin Ollie is favorite to land Pistons gig

FILE - In this Feb. 7, 2018, file photo, Connecticut head coach Kevin Ollie watches from the sideline during the first half an NCAA college basketball game in Storrs, Conn. An independent arbiter has ruled that UConn improperly fired former men's basketball coach Kevin Ollie and must pay him more than $11 million, Ollie's lawyer said Thursday, Jan. 20, 2022. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill, File) (Jessica Hill, Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

The Detroit Pistons are coming closer to hiring their new head coach.

The Pistons have identified their three finalists for the job, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, who reports the team, including owner Tom Gores, will hold meetings this week with the finalists, which include:

  • Former UConn and Overtime Elite coach Kevin Ollie
  • Pelicans assistant Jarron Collins
  • Bucks associate head coach Charles Lee

Ollie is considered the top candidate for the job, despite having no NBA coaching experience. Ollie coached at UConn from 2012 through 2018, including a national championship win in 2014. He was fired after the 2018 season for multiple recruiting violations and a losing record.

Ollie is currently coaching for Overtime Elite, a basketball league for some of the top players in the world between the ages of 16 and 20.

Lee, 37, is one of the more coveted assistant coaches interviewing for head coaching jobs in this cycle. He just finished his eighth season in the NBA, all on Mike Budenholzer’s staff with Atlanta and now with Milwaukee. (Budenholzer was just fired by the Bucks after losing in the first round to Miami)

Hiring Lee would follow a newer trend of hiring younger, former players, even without the head coaching experience. But Lee brings plenty of experience, even at 37, and would likely connect with the Pistons young core.

Collins, 44, was the biggest surprise on this list. He’s been an NBA assistant since 2014, mostly with the Warriors (2014-2021) and most recently with the Pelicans. He’s won three championships as an assistant coach.

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Ken Haddad is the digital content and audience manager for WDIV / He also authors the Morning Report Newsletter and various other newsletters. He's been with WDIV since 2013. He enjoys suffering through Lions games on Sundays in the fall.