Report: Miami Heat could be in danger of losing valuable coach to Charlotte Hornets

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Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Miami Heat assistant coach Chris Quinn reportedly could be among the early candidates to become the Charlotte Hornets’ newest head coach once Steve Clifford steps down from his position after the season in order to assume a role in the team’s front office.

Before beginning his stint coaching the Heat, Quinn suited up for the franchise during his playing career, as he spent the first three seasons of his NBA career in Miami. He averaged 5.6 points and 2.2 assists per game while shooting 39.7 percent from 3-point range across 168 total regular-season games with the franchise.

Quinn started out his NBA coaching career with the Heat in the 2014-15 season as a player development coach. Over the years, he has become Erik Spoelstra’s right-hand man as an assistant.

The 40-year-old has been considered for other open NBA coaching positions in the past, as he was linked to the Milwaukee Bucks job after the team opted to fire Mike Budenholzer following Milwaukee’s loss to the Heat in the first round of the 2023 NBA Playoffs.

The Hornets have been one of the worst teams in the NBA so far in the 2023-24 regular season. At 18-57, they own the No. 13 seed in the Eastern Conference, ahead of only the Washington Wizards and Detroit Pistons in the conference standings.

Charlotte is also riding a three-game losing streak and owns a poor record of 2-8 over its last 10 contests.

In Clifford’s most recent game as Charlotte’s head coach, the team lost to the Boston Celtics by 14 points on April 1. The play of Grant Willams — who dropped 23 points, seven rebounds and two assists against his former team — was one of the few bright spots for the Hornets in the loss.

If the Hornets do indeed poach Quinn from the Heat, it could prove to be a big loss for a Miami organization that is trying to get over the championship hump. The franchise is still looking for its first title since 2013, when the team was led by LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.

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Jesse is a 23-year-old sports journalist with extensive experience covering the NBA.