Warriors fire assistant coach Darren Erman for 'violation of company policy'
The Warriors announced Saturday that assistant coach Darren Erman has been relieved of his duties following an unspecified violation of the organization's policy.
"This is the type of decision that would be made across the board and irrespective of position within the organization," Warriors GM Bob Myers said in a statement. "Obviously, the timing is unfortunate, but we hold all of our employees, whether in basketball operations or other aspects of the business, accountable for their actions and to the same standard. We move forward and thank Darren for his contributions."
Erman, 37, was hired by the Warriors in 2011 as a coaching assistant for player development under coach Mark Jackson. He was promoted one year later to an assistant coach's role and headed up Golden State's 2013 Las Vegas Summer League championship team. Prior to joining the Warriors, Erman spent four years with the Celtics and coached at both the high school and college levels.
It's not yet clear what rule violation prompted Erman's dismissal, which comes just two weeks before the start of the 2014 playoffs.
The firing marks the second change to Jackson's staff in less than two weeks. Warriors assistant coach Brian Scalabrine was reassigned by Jackson to the D-League's Santa Cruz Warriors, following a Yahoo Sports report of dysfunction on Jackson's staff.
The Bay Area News Group reported Saturday that Myers said Erman's departure is "unrelated" to Scalabrine's reassignment and that Jackson characterized Erman's behavior as a "mistake."
"He owns it," Jackson explained. "He’s done a lot for me, he’s done a lot for this organization, and I’m pulling for him to make a comeback. I’m pulling for him to move on and become a great coach, and I believe that that can happen."
Jackson, who has faced some hot seat speculation in recent weeks, pushed back against the dysfunction talk and cited a "difference of philosophies" for Scalabrine's reassignment.
"I made the decision," Jackson said last week, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. "I'm fortunate enough to have an ownership group and a management group that allows me to pick my staff. We're just going in a different direction. That's that. I made a decision and wish him nothing but the very best. ... The culture, the environment has no dysfunction at all. That's comical. It's a fun time, and we are looking forward to finishing up the season. It's a time to be smiling and joyful."
The 49-year-old Jackson has compiled a 117-107 (.522) record in three seasons with the Warriors, his first head coaching job after a 17-year playing career and many years spent as a commentator. Golden State picked up his option for the 2014-15 season last fall but the two sides have not agreed to an extension. Golden State enters Saturday's action with a 47-29, which puts them in the West's No. 6 seed. The Warriors advanced to the conference semifinals last year for just the second time since 1992.