Probably the best visual representation of the Clippers' respect of Vinny Del Negro as you'll find (Getty Images)
It's cruel to point out, but Vinny Del Negro's time as coach of the Los Angeles Clippers has gotten exactly to the expectation point those that watched VDN's tough turn as Chicago Bulls coach thought it would. He's been given a mismatched roster, to be sure, but his 28-21 Clippers could be characterized as "underachieving," and all the hallmarks of a Del Negro-coached team are there. The squad's offense is predictable, players are apparently chafing at his style of leadership behind the scenes, and (less importantly, but most annoyingly) Del Negro is still keeping up with that tradition of clapping and yelling at opposing 3-point shooters near his bench, as if he was a pep squad member in an amateur setting.
This is why rumors have been swirling about Del Negro's permanence and impermanence for most of the month of March, a month that has seen the Clippers go 8-9. This is also why the Clippers GM Neil Olshey and owner Donald Sterling gave Vinny what sportswriters are legally bound to refer to as the "dreaded vote of confidence" on Monday. Here's Sterling's take on his beleaguered coach:
Read More »from Clipper coach Vinny Del Negro can probably count on his front office’s vote of confidence
"I like him," Sterling told the Los Angeles Times. "I usually follow the advice of my people, and I think they care for him, like him and want him to succeed. And I think he will….I don't know where all these stories are coming from; nobody talked to me. Everything is good.