Breaking news from the NBA: TNT analyst Doug Collins is returning to coaching.
Collins, regarded as one of the better NBA analysts, will coach the Chicago Bulls next season. Collins is currently serving as the lead analyst on TNT’s Western Conference Final coverage.
This marks the second straight year TNT has lost one its lead analysts. Steve Kerr left the booth last year to get a headstart on the Phoenix Suns rebuilding process.
Expect Collins to call the rest of the Western Conference Finals; last year, Kerr stayed in the booth for the final game of the Pistons/Cavaliers series, despite announcing that he would take the Suns’ General Manager position. In 2001, Collins (then with NBC) stayed in the booth through the NBA Finals after being hired by the Washington Wizards.
Where does this leave TNT? Collins and Kevin Harlan made up a solid back-up announcing team for four years, and Collins has been on TNT’s Conference Final broadcast team for the same amount of time.
Look for TNT to either move Mike Fratello to the #2 team with Harlan next season, or add a new analyst to the booth. Perhaps TNT could snatch Orlando Magic analyst Matt Guokas, formerly of NBC, or even Greg Anthony, who is rumored to be in the final year of his contract with ESPN and now rarely makes appearances on the network.