Brown says he has no intention of retiring

Updated: July 15, 2005, 9:55 AM ET
Associated Press

Larry Brown wants to return to the Detroit Pistons if owner Bill Davidson will have him back. If not, he wants to move on.

"My thing has never changed. I want to coach Detroit, and I expressed that to them," Brown said of his meeting Wednesday in suburban Detroit with Davidson, team president Joe Dumars and Brown's agent, Joe Glass. "Now Mr. D and Joe just have to talk to Mr. Glass and decide what they want to do.

"I want them to be comfortable. I don't want to retire, but I want to move forward," Brown said.

In a telephone interview Thursday night with The Associated Press, Brown again described the meeting as positive and said he was relieved to have an opportunity to address numerous issues with Davidson. Among the topics were Brown's health, and how the team might respond if Brown is again forced to miss time as he did last season when Gar Heard guided the team for 17 games while Brown underwent surgery.

Brown developed a bladder problem after having hip surgery, and he said during the NBA playoffs that he would not want to coach again with his current medical condition.

He sought treatment in late June at the Mayo Clinic, and Brown still does not know if his bladder disorder can be corrected. But in his interview with the AP, Brown sounded much more open to the idea of learning to live with the discomfort while continuing to coach.

Dumars has said Detroit would welcome Brown back if he's willing to return, but Davidson is believed to have been bothered by Brown's flirtations with the Cleveland Cavaliers and his comments over the winter to a New York tabloid that coaching the Knicks would be a dream job.

The Knicks have been awaiting a resolution of Brown's status with the Pistons, and they presumably would make a strong pitch to bring him aboard if Detroit decides not to bring him back.

Knicks president Isiah Thomas had a falling out with Davidson years ago, and the Pistons' owner would clearly not relish the prospect of Brown joining Thomas in New York.

The Pistons signed Brown to a five-year contract worth about $25 million, plus incentive bonuses, two years ago.

"I'm confident I'll be back, but you never know," Brown said. "Whatever happens will be for the best of the franchise, and that's the important thing."

Brown, who said he has not had any conversations with anyone representing the Knicks, expects to know his status with the Pistons "by Monday at the latest."

"I hope I can continue to coach, but if not I'll hang out with my kids," Brown said.

Pistons spokesman Matt Dobek said talks between Dumars and Glass were continuing, and there was no other news to report.

Brown held discussions with the Cavaliers in the spring about the possibility of becoming team president, though he steadfastly maintained he was only looking for a fallback plan of his own in the event his medical condition precluded him from coaching. The Cavs hired Danny Ferry as their general manager last month, and owner Dan Gilbert assured Ferry he would have complete control.


Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press

ALSO SEE