Wolves interview Grizzlies' Dave Joerger for head coach position
MAY 24, 2014 9:55p ET
MINNEAPOLIS -- Dave Joerger's chances of coming home to coach continue to increase.
The Timberwolves interviewed Joerger on Saturday afternoon at the Target Center, a team source confirmed to FOXSportsNorth.com, and walked away impressed with the Staples, Minn., native who spent last season leading Memphis to a 50-win season.
Joerger has been rumored for days to be the frontrunner to replace Rick Adelman, who retired following Minnesota's 40-42 campaign. The Grizzlies are in the midst of a second straight offseason shakeup and purportedly plan to go a different direction at the head coaching spot, as well.
Which opens up a picturesque personal opportunity for Joerger, one his father Joe Joerger told FOXSportsNorth.com would be a "dream come true."
The Associated Press is reporting the Wolves have decided they want Joerger to be their next head coach, but a contract with him and compensation to the Grizzlies still need to be worked on.
The Timberwolves reportedly also interviewed former Timberwolves player Sam Mitchell and former Memphis coach Lionel Hollins, whom Joerger replaced last summer. But it appears Joerger has a leg up on both of them to become the franchise's 11th head coach.
Joerger, 40, grew up in Staples and played college basketball at Concordia College and Moorhead State. As an aspiring coach, he attended Minnesota practices helmed by Flip Saunders -- now the team's president of basketball operations -- to soak in information. According to multiple reports, Saunders also interviewed Joerger in a preliminary meeting Thursday.
Following a minor-league career path similar to Saunders', Joerger won championships in the International Basketball Association, Continental Basketball Association and NBA Developmental League before taking an assistant job under head coach Marc Iavaroni. In 2011, Joerger became Hollins' top assistant and primarily oversaw the team's defense.
The Grizzlies let Hollins go after he led them to the 2013 Western Conference finals and placed Joerger in charge. A year later, owner Robert Pera already has fired CEO Jason Levien and player personnel director Stu Lash, and Joerger is apparently next on the chopping block.
The Timberwolves and Grizzlies would still need to iron out compensation in exchange for Joerger, but Minnesota has leverage in the fact Memphis has made apparent its desire to separate from him. The Timberwolves have three second-round picks they could deal, and some cash considerations could be thrown in as well.
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