Rick Carlisle steps down as Mavericks head coach
The Dallas Mavericks parted ways with longtime general manager Donnie Nelson on Wednesday, but it turns out that is not the most significant change they are making this offseason.
Rick Carlisle informed Mavericks owner Mark Cuban on Thursday that he will not return as head coach next season. He said in a statement to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski that the decision was “solely” his. Carlisle also said he is “excited about the next chapter of my coaching career,” which indicates he will look for a job elsewhere.
Rick Carlisle statement to ESPN: pic.twitter.com/zdKA8sWa4Y
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 17, 2021
Carlisle had been the head coach in Dallas since 2008. He led the Mavericks to an NBA title in 2011, but they have not advanced past the first round of the playoffs since.
Carlisle, 61, will be one of the top candidates on the market for other NBA head coaching jobs if he chooses to coach next season.
The Mavericks say they mutually parted ways with Nelson, but a report from The Athletic claims the longtime GM was fired. Nelson was concerned about the increasing influence of former sports gambler Haralabos Voulgaris, who was hired by Cuban in 2018 as director of quantitative research and development. It’s possible the organizational dynamic was an issue for Carlisle as well.
Mavericks star Luka Doncic does not seem pleased about the departure of Nelson. It will be interesting to see what he has to say about Carlisle’s exit.