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NBA notes: Steve Clifford is latest to coach Bobcats

Published May 30, 2013 7:58 am

New coach inherits team with 28-120 mark over 2 seasons.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Steve Clifford said he isn't one to back down from challenges.

That might make him a good fit for Charlotte. The Bobcats are a long way from being a contender.

The team introduced Clifford as their new head coach at a news conference Wednesday. Clifford becomes the Bobcats' sixth different coach since the 2006-07 season and inherits a team that went a combined 28-120 over the past two seasons.

"Steve has worked quite a few years in this league and we feel very positive with that with our young competitive core that he is the right fit for us," said Rod Higgins, Bobcats president of basketball operations.

Clifford's core players include no big-time NBA stars, but rather young and developing players.

"I think every coach in basketball has his own priorities in terms of judging players, but for me it starts with competitiveness," Clifford said.

This is his first NBA head coaching job.

New Hawks coach 'living a dream'

New Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer is "living a dream" as he makes plans to remain with the Spurs through the NBA Finals before turning his focus to his first NBA head coaching job.

Budenholzer, 43, who spent 19 years with the Spurs, including 17 seasons as an assistant, was named the Hawks' coach Tuesday, one day after the Spurs completed a four-game sweep of Memphis in the Western Conference finals.

"It's been a pretty amazing 48 hours, I'll be very honest with you," Budenholzer said Wednesday as he was introduced by Hawks general manager Danny Ferry. "… The opportunity to come here with the Atlanta Hawks, when you couple that with coming to the NBA Finals, I'm living a dream."

Blazers' Matthews has elbow surgery

Trail Blazers guard Wesley Matthews underwent an arthroscopic procedure on his left elbow.

Matthews' recovery should take three to four weeks. The procedure, an arthroscopic debridement, was performed at a St. Louis hospital on Wednesday.

Matthews averaged 14.8 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.5 assists last season.