Bobcats to interview Butch Carter
Ex-Raptors coach part of search to replace Bickerstaff
Posted: Thursday March 29, 2007 12:41PM; Updated: Thursday March 29, 2007 3:43PM
Two league sources say that the search for Bernie Bickerstaff's successor in Charlotte is underway -- and one of the candidates is former Raptors coach Butch Carter.
The sources maintain that Carter has been promised an interview with Bobcats minority owner Michael Jordan. But it isn't known if Carter is a favorite to get the job.
The Bobcats already announced that Bickerstaff won't be returning as coach next season, though he is expected to maintain an executive role in the front office.
If the Bobcats are considering Carter, it will be a provocative move. His three-year tenure as Raptors coach culminated in a 45-win season and the franchise's first playoff appearance. But he was fired after that season in June 2000 for a number of controversies, including a short-lived lawsuit he filed against former Raptor Marcus Camby (for referring to Carter as a liar); Carter's statements that the NBA was conspiring to move Tracy McGrady and Vince Carter out of Toronto; and his failed attempt to acquire the GM title in Toronto, based on his argument that he needed more power to recruit free agents.
"He was successful as a coach in the NBA,'' says one of the league sources. "I don't know that he's going to necessarily get the job, but enough time has passed to help people forget some of the crazy stuff.''
Other rumored candidates for the Bobcats' job include Larry Brown and current Raptors coach Sam Mitchell, whose contract will expire at the end of this season. But it remains to be seen whether the Bobcats will be offering enough money to sign either of those candidates.