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End of coaching watch? Suns players acknowledge expected announcement of Green as next Pelicans head coach

FILE - Phoenix Suns assistant coach Willie Green is shown during the second half of an NBA...
FILE - Phoenix Suns assistant coach Willie Green is shown during the second half of an NBA basketball game in Denver, in this Sunday, Nov. 24, 2019, file photo. A person familiar with the situation says the New Orleans Pelicans are negotiating with Suns assistant Willie Green about taking over as head coach but no deal is in place and discussions could extend beyond the NBA Finals. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because talks were ongoing and the Pelicans have not publicly discussed coaching candidates. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)(David Zalubowski | AP)
Published: Jul. 16, 2021 at 4:19 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 16, 2021 at 7:13 PM CDT
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PHOENIX, Az. (WVUE) - As the Phoenix Suns go head-to-head with the Milwaukee Bucks, with the series tied at 2-2, the organization is preparing to say goodbye to their lead assistant coach with the expected announcement that Willie Green will be the next head coach of the New Orleans Pelicans.

Related story: Suns’ assistant coach Green reportedly front-runner for Pelicans head coach vacancy

Suns shooting guard, Devin Booker, who has become one of the NBA’s most rising stars, said that Phoenix’s future loss will be a valuable gain for New Orleans, a franchise looking to get things going with Zion Williamson.

“It’s hard to put into words,” said Devin Booker when asked about Green’s expected departure for the Big Easy in today’s NBA Finals media availability. “I’m excited for him first and his family. We’ve been through a lot these last two years ... spending a lot of time together. We’ve developed a relationship, and I respect him to the fullest. New Orleans is going to get a really good guy on their hands.”

Suns coach Monty Williams, who was formerly a head coach for the Pelicans, shared his feelings on the expected announcement.

“I’m happy and I’m unbelievably sad about it,” Williams said during media availability today. “He’s a huge part of my life.”

While the media attended Phoenix’s practice today, it appeared that the team and head coach Monty Williams met with Green at center court to acknowledge that their lead assistant will head south to New Orleans following the conclusion of the NBA Finals.

Players and staff huddled close together with Green in the center and applauded. Williams was seen embracing his assistant, who played under Williams during the 2011 season in New Orleans.

If confirmed, Green, at age 39, will be the NBA’s third-youngest head coach.

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