The Rick Pitino
frenzy escalated on Hub channels yesterday, with Ch. 4's Bob Lobel
declaring his move to coach the Celtics "a done thing," Bob Neumeier
on-camera from an Atlanta bookstore named "Chapter 11" and Ch. 7 also
aggressive with a split screen of Gary Gillis in Atlanta and John Dennis
with the Larry Bird story in Indianapolis.
Ch. 7's Gene Lavanchy placed the C's Pitino
offer at $ 40 million-$ 70 million over 10 years plus "a piece of the
team (3 percent)." But Neumeier, in his later report, said Pitino told him team ownership is not involved.
Among network affiliates, Ch. 5 took the most conservative approach with Pitino
and Bird, sliding their stories inside the sports report. But Mike
Lynch had first word of Mike Keenan having a second interview about the
Bruins' coaching vacancy and said his agent is already negotiating a
contract with the team. "So Jack Parker's decision may be made for him,"
With Ch. 4's sportscast airing
after its two early competitors went to network news, Neumeier had
Boston TV's only fresh chat with Pitino,
who said he won't delay, but all that may be known today is whether
he'll stay at Kentucky. That moved Kentucky WKYT-TV sports anchor Dave
Baker to suggest Pitino might negotiate elsewhere in the NBA, but Lobel didn't buy the slant.
Neumeier used a play on words with the store where Pitino
was hawking his book. "Rick won't have to worry about any Chapter 11 in
his future," he cracked. Ch. 4 had another light moment with
tight-lipped C's owner Paul Gaston walking to his limousine with Scott
Wahle and momentarily unable to get inside.
Gillis was outside "Chapter 11" but didn't have a Pitino
interview on the early report and said little except he was going
inside to get his book signed. Dennis, alone in Indy among the Hub tube
corps, said there were no other Pacers candidates, an offer was made and
Bird "is bigger here."
Ch. 25's Jeff Cawley said WFXT was first to report in early April that Bird was interested in coaching the Pacers.