High school coach leaves for job with dad in locked out NBA

Cameron Smith
Prep Rally

When a high school coach receives an offer to join a collegiate program, he nearly always jumps at the chance. Given that, the decision by David Adelman, the coach at Portland (Ore.) Lincoln High, to leave his post for a position as an assistant coach on an NBA staff is more than understandable, except for one thing: He's leaving for a job in a locked out league with few prospects of an immediate return to action.

Lincoln basketball coach David Adelman
Lincoln basketball coach David Adelman

For that reason and that reason alone, Adelman's decision to accept an assistant's position with the Minnesota Timberwolves -- where his father, Rick Adelman, is scheduled to be the head coach when the NBA eventually resumes -- is a bit of an odd one.

As reported by the Portland Oregonian, Adelman built up a reservoir of respect among the Oregon basketball community by building Lincoln into a program of consistent winners.

Across his five years at the helm, the Cardinals went 83-53, finishing on the doorstep of a Class 6A state title in 2009 and winning the fourth-place game in the 2011 Class 6A state tournament. They also won the Portland Interscholastic district's title in 2006-07, 2009-10 and 2010-11.

Whether or not all that success will transfer over to the NBA level remains to be seen. How long until anyone gets to guide that is equally in question, with no end to the ongoing lockout currently in sight.

"It is unfortunate timing," Lincoln athletic director Jeff Peeler told the Oregonian. "We're thrilled for David, but the timing is not ideal."

The timing is not ideal, and the decision is questionable, given the NBA's ongoing labor strife. If nothing else, it certainly speaks to the allure of a professional coaching job, even when there isn't a league to compete in.

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