Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Sports NewsMayfield's Mutterings: Springing into Mutterings

Collins backs off talk on 76ers vacancy

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[May 13, 2009]  LOS ANGELES (AP) -- TNT analyst Doug Collins apologized to Philadelphia 76ers president Ed Stefanski for mistakenly saying he spoke to the team about its open coaching job.

RestaurantCollins had told The Associated Press on Tuesday night before Game 5 of the Rockets-Lakers series he had talked with the Sixers about their vacancy "like two or three times."

"Whatever they want to do, they know where I am if they want to call," he said.

Collins, a former NBA coach, then backtracked on his original comments during the game and denied speaking with Stefanski.

"I have not spoken to them. And I want them to understand that," Collins said on TV. "I feel very badly if there was a miscommunication there at all."

He added: "I apologize to Eddie Stefanski if they felt like I was putting something out there that was not true."

Collins and former Washington Wizards coach Eddie Jordan were among the list of candidates floated to replace Tony DiLeo, who stepped down on Monday and returned to the front office.

The 76ers did not return repeated attempts at comment.

After a 9-14 start under Maurice Cheeks, DiLeo replaced him on an interim basis. Philadelphia went 32-27 under DiLeo and made the playoffs.

Collins is 332-287 in a coaching career that includes stops with Chicago, Detroit and Washington. He hasn't coached since the 2002-03 season with the Wizards.

Jordan interviewed with Sacramento on Tuesday and said he had "minimal contact" with the Sixers.

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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