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Boomers assistant Adam Caporn believed to be leading contender for Adelaide 36ers coaching job, but club must wait on signing him
The Adelaide 36ers have all but settled on their new coach and were poised to offer him a deal when the coronavirus crisis sent the world into shutdown and the club into an indefinite holding pattern.
The Sixers might be in off season mode, but they are not immune to the economic crisis gripping sporting teams across the country.
Two roles have been dissolved in the past week - media manager Kate Taeuber, who was made redundant, and their community and game night operations manager, who resigned.
Neither role are expected to be replaced.
Talks with candidates have been put on hold while the 36ers await a decision from the NBL with regards to player free agency, fixturing and resources for next season after its off-season competition 'NBL1' was cancelled.
It’s understood that Boomers assistant and current AIS high performance basketball head Adam Caporn is the front runner for the Adelaide job where he would reunite with the Sixers’ only new signing Josh Giddey.
The Sixers had interviewed a candidate in the US but travel restrictions and the unknown of the coronavirus means that now appears highly unlikely.
Adelaide basketball operations manager Jeff Van Groningen said the club was awaiting information from the NBL before signing its new coach to replace Joey Wright.
"We were in the process of the final stage of our search (for a new coach)," Van Groningen said.
“We identified some great candidates and were getting to the point where we were preparing to offer a candidate the job, I’m not prepared to talk about who that was ... we believe the discussions need to occur about whether the interest we have is shared by the candidate and that’s where it stopped.
“It doesn’t need to go any further than that right now because it’s a pause while we look at more important international matters at hand.
“If travel restrictions are (still there) those are logistical nightmares for any league with an international component.
“I haven’t thought much about that, I’m more interested in the timing of free agency and the league and the off-season, they are much more pertinent than coaching.”
The NBL is still targeting an October start date for next season, but management is in constant discussions with clubs and the players’ association as the health crisis unfolds.
“We really need to have information about what the league is doing with the structure of the off-season,” Van Groningen said.
“This is normally the time we would find out things like the fixture, and now you’ve got this unprecedented world event that very understandably needs to be completely understood.
“Are things going to look different in terms of dates or economically? If those things (cutbacks) are happening in one league (AFL and NRL) you can make a decent assumption that will happen elsewhere.
“But it’s counter-productive to speculate, the owners are contributing and that’s the most important thing and the league is key to it all because they govern the sport.”
Van Groningen also confirmed that both Anthony Drmic and Harry Froling had been told to explore their free agency options, despite the club initially telling The Advertiser that Froling was a required player and were in advanced discussions with his management about a new deal.
Drmic was awarded Adelaide’s most improved player this season and Froling was NBL Rookie of the Year two years ago.
“We have elected to go ahead and let Harry exercise that ability to be a free agent, and we have communicated that to him,” Van Groningen said.
He said no decision had been made on players who were contracted for next season, but with a club option on their final year.