West Contender Offered Strong Ultimatum Over Former Nets Star

James Harden, Sam Cassell

Getty Sam Cassell and James Harden have a discussion on the Sixers bench.

If you follow trends on NBA Twitter, you are likely aware of the long-standing beef that two-time NBA champion Vernon Maxwell has with the Utah Jazz and their fanbase. The beef originated during the two times the Rockets and Jazz met in the playoffs during Maxwell’s time in Houston in 1994 and 1995.

But on June 15, NBA insider Shams Charania announced that the Jazz would be interviewing former Nets star and current Philadelphia 76ers assistant Sam Cassell for their head coaching vacancy. After hearing the news, Maxwell gave the Western Conference powerhouse an ultimatum.

“Hey [Utah Jazz] I heard you guys are interviewing my man, Sam Cassell. We are going to become the best of friends if you all hire my man!” Maxwell said via his Twitter account on June 15.

“I’ll be your BIGGEST FAN IN THE NBA. I’ll forgive you for everything and choose a new team that bothered Mad Max, like Indiana or Portland!”

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Reggie Miller Gives Sam Cassell Ringing Endorsement

Cassell was Maxwell’s teammate when they won back-to-back titles with the Rockets in 1994 and 1995, which likely has to do with his ringing endorsement. But aside from that, Cassell is one of the most well-liked people around the NBA. So having him in a locker room that is discombobulated as Utah’s would pay major dividends in an effort to get them back on the right track. Hall of Famer Reggie Miller also endorsed the former Nets star as the next head coach of the Jazz in response to Maxwell.

“I HOPE Sam [Cassell] gets the gig, way overdue,” Miller said via his Twitter account. “But I assume you will keep your very funny vitriol for a western conference opponent you saw on the regular like Portland, you come calling for us hicks in Indiana, I may have to bring my bike to Carolina to race ya.”

Quinn Snyder’s Resignation Had Ripple Effect on Jazz

The Jazz came into this year’s playoffs as a high-ranked seed but had no answer for Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks as they were upset in the first round. It led to Quinn Snyder’s decision to step down as coach, which has had a ripple effect on Jazz superstar Donovan Mitchell’s outlook on his future in Utah.

“Amid the reverberations of Quin Snyder’s departure after eight seasons as the Utah Jazz coach, All-Star guard Donovan Mitchell is described as “unsettled, unnerved, and wondering what it means for the franchise’s future,” NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski writes per ESPN.

“Mitchell considered Snyder a significant part of his reasoning for committing to a five-year maximum contract extension in 2020, and Snyder’s decision to step away on Sunday has left Mitchell “surprised and disappointed”. Mitchell remains fond of Snyder and accepts his reasons for stepping down, but Mitchell is spending the immediate aftermath of Snyder’s decision trying to process what the coach’s loss means in the larger scope for the organization and himself.”

As the NBA season winds down, and free agency draws nearer, it will be time for many franchises to make key decisions for 2023. It will be interesting to see what the NBA landscape looks like heading into next season.

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