Amid reports that he had spoken with the Brooklyn Nets and Sacramento Kings about a potential head coaching job, Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari denied his interest in leaving the Wildcats on Twitter on Monday.
“You may have heard me say this before: I absolutely have the best coaching job in sports and I plan on being at Kentucky for a long time,” Calipari wrote. “I am not negotiating with ANYBODY. My total focus is on this team and winning the next game.”
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reported Monday that Calipari had told the Nets and Kings that he would require a 10-year, $120 million contract to return to the NBA.
Calipari has served as Kentucky’s coach since 2009, but coached the Nets for nearly three seasons before he was fired during the 1998–99 season.
The Nets fired head coach Lionel Hollins on Sunday, and are reportedly interested in making Calipari the head coach and president of the team. Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov neither confirmed nor denied the team’s interest in Calipari during a press conference Monday.
Before hiring David Blatt to start the 2014–15 season, the Cleveland Cavaliers offered Calipari a 10-year, $80 million contract, which he declined, Wojnarowski reports. Last year, Calipari reportedly responded to the Kings’ queries with a requirement of a deal worth $11 million annually, as he is currently earning between $8 million and $9 million per year at Kentucky.
Calipari led the Nets to a 72–112 record during his time as head coach, but has lost just 41 of 243 games at the helm of Kentucky’s basketball program.
The Nets are currently 10–27, the third-worst record in the NBA.
- Erin Flynn