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Charlotte Bobcats Hire Mike Dunlap, Leaving Orlando Magic with One of Two NBA Coach Vacancies

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Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE
Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE

The Charlotte Bobcats reached an agreement with Mike Dunlap, formerly of the St. John's Red Storm, to be their next head coach, the Charlotte Observer reported Monday evening. Dunlap's hire leaves the Orlando Magic and Portland Trail Blazers as the only two NBA teams with head-coaching vacancies. Charlotte chose Dunlap over a host of other candidates, including Indiana Pacers assistant coach Brian Shaw and Los Angeles Lakers assistant coach Quin Snyder. Shaw is expected to interview for the Magic job once Orlando hires a General Manager and is reportedly "the favorite" among team ownership.

Shaw, who played three seasons for Orlando in the mid-1990s, is among the league's most respected assistant coaches, having earned the trust of Phil Jackson when Jackson was the Lakers' head coach. As Shaun Powell of NBA.com notes, Shaw is the "only thing" Lakers stars Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant "agreed on" in his time with L.A. Shaw left the Lakers after the team elected to hire Mike Brown over him upon Jackson's retirement in 2011.

The Magic parted ways with coach Stan Van Gundy on May 21st after five season, during which time the club made NBA Finals appearance and two Eastern Conference Finals appearances.

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