The Pistons and senior director of player personnel Gregg Polinsky have mutually decided to part ways, according to Bobby Marks of ESPN.
Along with that move, the Pistons officially announced the hiring of former Michigan and Cavaliers coach John Beilein as senior advisor/player development. He will work closely with coach Dwane Casey and the rest of the staff to analyze and implement player skill development programs.
“John has been one of the best fundamental teachers in the college game for years,” Casey said in a statement. “With the age of our core group I wanted to add to our excellent developmental staff.
“John is a basketball lifer with a passion to help young players get better, especially in the area of shooting. We have an excellent group of young development coaches who have done a good job with our young core. John will add to and enrich the development staff’s quest to get our youth brigade to the next level.”
Polinsky joined the Pistons’ front office three years ago, following 19 seasons in various roles with the Nets, including as the director of college scouting. He coached Georgia Southern from 1995-99.
Beilein, 66, spent his first four decades of coaching in the college ranks, before taking the Cavaliers’ job in 2019. He lasted just 54 games in Cleveland before reaching what was called a mutual agreement to part ways.
He was considerably more successful at the NCAA level, leading Michigan to two championship game appearances (2013, ’18), finishing runner-up each time. Overall, he compiled a 278-150 record with the Wolverines in 12 seasons.
Before that, he coached West Virginia to a 104-60 mark in five seasons. That included one run to the Elite Eight and another to the Sweet Sixteen. He also served as head coach at Richmond and Canisius, as well as Division III programs Le Moyne and Nazareth.
Beilein regularly attended games in Detroit this past season, noted Marc Stein of the New York Times, as well with making regular studio appearances on the Big Ten Network.
The Pistons finished 20-52, the worst record in the Eastern Conference and second worst in the NBA overall. Only the Rockets have better odds at the No. 1 pick entering the draft lottery at the end of the month.
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