Reunion day arrives for Adelman, McHale

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 23, 2012 - 2:31 PM

Rick Adelman and Kevin McHale will meet their former teams in Monday's Timberwolves-Houston game at Target Center.


Wolves coach Rick Adelman

Photo: Jerry Holt, Star Tribune

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

Rick Adelman and Kevin McHale will meet their former teams in Monday's Timberwolves-Houston game for the first time since Adelman left the Rockets in April after four seasons as their coach and McHale departed in 2009 from the franchise he guided for 14 seasons.

Both have had long, distinguished NBA careers, Adelman for 20 seasons as a head coach who has won 952 career games and McHale for nearly 30 years as a Hall of Fame player, front-office executive and coach.

Rockets guard Chase Budinger has played for both in his young NBA career.

"That's the thing about coaches: They're all different," said Budinger, a third-year player. "The two coaches I've had in the NBA, they're opposites: One's a communicator who likes to talk with players, individually and as a team. The other one barely talked at all. The good thing about both of them is their definitely players' coaches. They do it in different ways, but both definitely are looking for what he can do to help players be successful."

Adelman left the Rockets last spring after his contract expired. The Rockets hired McHale to replace him in May. The Wolves, in turn, hired Adelman in September.

"I love Rick to death," Rockets guard Kyle Lowry said. "We had a good thing going. He was kind of to himself, that's him. ... But with Coach Mac, he's in your face, he's talking to you. He wants to teach you. He wants to be on the floor with you. He wants you to be good and wants to help you learn every possession. Every player, he wants to help."

Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey hired both coaches. He sees as many similarities as differences.

"Both guys have a great feel for the game," he said. "I think if Kevin had chosen the coaching path, he'd obviously be further along. What Rick has been able to accomplish is something very few coaches have. We're all looking up to what he's been able to do."

That's history

McHale has the Rockets 9-7 and on a six-game winning streak even though their roster lacks the kind of player he most covets: a guy who can demand a double-team.

The Rockets sought a star big man before the season started, pursuing Nene and Marc Gasol in free agency and making a trade for All-Star Pau Gasol in a three-way deal with New Orleans and the Lakers that the NBA vetoed.

So Houston signed Samuel Dalembert, and on Saturday the big guy blocked six shots on a sprained ankle in a victory over San Antonio at home.

"You know what?" McHale said when asked "What if" about Pau Gasol. "That's neither here nor there. That didn't happen. That, that ain't happening."


The only piece left from the Wolves team McHale constructed as its general manager is fourth-year forward Kevin Love, whom McHale acquired for O.J. Mayo's draft rights in a 2008 draft-night that Wolves fans second-guessed to no end.

Now Love is an All-Star and likely will sign a rich contract extension by Wednesday.

"He's a great player, he's a great guy, too," McHale said. "I like Kevin. He looks really good. I tell you what, I'd like to get on his diet plan."

Remembering when...

After playing 13 seasons with the Celtics, McHale retired as a player in 1993, when a good share of the players he now coaches weren't yet in school.

"Surprisingly yes," Morey said when asked if today's players know and appreciate McHale's Hall of Fame playing career. "Players get a knock for not knowing basketball history, but I think we've got smarter players than most teams."

  • related content

  • Rand: Wolves rock the joint again in late-night win

    Monday January 23, 2012

    If you have ever loved a band well before the musicians "made it big," you can appreciate the suffering of Timberwolves fans and the catharsis that took place late Friday...

  • McHale finds a new lease on coaching life in Houston

    Sunday January 22, 2012

    After he was unceremoniously dropped by the Timberwolves, the kid from Hibbing is rejuvenated with the Rockets.

  • Wolves-Houston game preview

    Sunday January 22, 2012

    Preview: Former Timberwolves executive/coach Kevin McHale has the Rockets on a six-game winning streak. Five of those have been at home, over Sacramento, Portland, Detroit, New Orleans and San Antonio...


  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


Chicago Cubs - LP: J. Arrieta 2 FINAL
Cincinnati - WP: D. Axelrod 7
NY Yankees - LP: S. Kelley 2 FINAL
Detroit - WP: P. Coke 3
Colorado - LP: J. Lyles 1 FINAL
San Francisco - WP: Y. Petit 4
Tampa Bay - LP: K. Yates 4 FINAL
Baltimore - WP: A. Miller 5
Atlanta - WP: M. Minor 6 FINAL
NY Mets - LP: J. Niese 1
Cleveland - WP: C. Carrasco 3 FINAL
Chicago WSox - LP: J. Danks 2
Minnesota - WP: A. Swarzak 11 FINAL
Kansas City - LP: B. Chen 5
Texas - LP: R. Mendez 2 FINAL
Houston - WP: C. McHugh 4
Oakland - LP: R. Cook 3 FINAL
LA Angels - WP: F. Salas 4
Atlanta 24 FINAL
Jacksonville 14
Detroit 23 FINAL
Buffalo 0
Indianapolis 7 FINAL
Cincinnati 35
Kansas City 14 FINAL
Green Bay 34
Philadelphia 37
St. Louis 13 FINAL
Miami 14
Carolina 10 FINAL
Pittsburgh 0
New England 13 FINAL
NY Giants 16
Washington 24 FINAL
Tampa Bay 10
Baltimore 22 FINAL
New Orleans 13
Chicago 13 FINAL
Cleveland 33
Denver 27 FINAL
Dallas 3
Minnesota 19 FINAL
Tennessee 3
San Francisco 40 FINAL
Houston 13
Arizona 9 FINAL
San Diego 12
Seattle 31 FINAL
Oakland 41
(21) Texas A&M 52 FINAL
(9) So Carolina 28
Wake Forest 10 FINAL
ULM 17
Boise State 13 FINAL
(18) Ole Miss 35
Tulane 31 FINAL
Tulsa 38
Rutgers 41 FINAL
Washington St 38
Weber State 14 FINAL
(19) Arizona State 45
Temple 37 FINAL
Vanderbilt 7
BYU 6:00 PM
(6) Jacksonville St 6:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Bowling Green 6:30 PM
Western Ky
TX-San Antonio 8:00 PM
Colorado State 8:00 PM
UNLV 9:30 PM
Penn State 8/30/14 7:30 AM
Troy 8/30/14 11:00 AM
(7) UCLA 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Western Mich 8/30/14 11:00 AM
(5) Ohio State 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Appalachian St 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Ga Southern 8/30/14 11:30 AM
NC State
Boston College 8/30/14 2:00 PM
West Virginia 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(2) Alabama
Rice 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
(10) South Dakota St 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(24) Missouri
Fla Atlantic 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(22) Nebraska
California 8/30/14 2:30 PM
Marshall 8/30/14 2:30 PM
UC Davis 8/30/14 3:00 PM
(11) Stanford
Arkansas 8/30/14 3:00 PM
(6) Auburn
(16) Clemson 8/30/14 4:30 PM
(12) Georgia
Liberty 8/30/14 5:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Ohio U 8/30/14 5:00 PM
Kent State
Louisiana Tech 8/30/14 6:00 PM
(4) Oklahoma
Idaho 8/30/14 6:00 PM
Stephen F Austin 8/30/14 6:10 PM
(20) Kansas State
Fresno State 8/30/14 6:30 PM
(15) USC
Southern Miss 8/30/14 6:30 PM
Miss State
Texas-El Paso 8/30/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico
North Texas 8/30/14 7:00 PM
(1) Florida State 8/30/14 7:00 PM
Oklahoma State
(14) Wisconsin 8/30/14 8:00 PM
(13) LSU
South Dakota 8/30/14 9:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(25) Washington 8/30/14 9:30 PM
Utah State 8/31/14 6:00 PM
SMU 8/31/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
Miami-Florida 9/1/14 7:00 PM
Arizona 9/4/14 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Ottawa 6:30 PM
Winnipeg 8/31/14 3:00 PM
Toronto 9/1/14 12:00 PM
Edmonton 9/1/14 3:30 PM
Brt Columbia 9/5/14 6:30 PM
Calgary 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Saskatchewan 9/7/14 3:00 PM
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters





question of the day

Poll: How many games will the Timberwolves win this season?

Weekly Question