It didn’t take long for St John’s to find it’s new head coach, and they reached back in the history to do it. They hired former St John’s great Chris Mullin to be their new head coach. The knock on Mullin is that he never coached before at any level, so was he the right hire for St John’s? While Mullin may be short on experience he is not short on supporters who believe he will be a good coach for St John’s. Starting with his former boss in Golden state Al Attles …
“That’s terrific. I’m a big Chris Mullin fan,” said Al Attles, who as the Golden State general manager drafted Mullin seventh following the NBA’s first-ever lottery in 1985. “I remember Mr. [Franklin] Mieuli, the greatest owner ever, wanted me to go to New York. Chris was a New York boy and he wanted to stay in New York and his family wanted him to stay in New York. All of a sudden he’s going 3,000 miles away. So I went back as an ambassador for Mr. Mieuli and Chris did very, very well here.
“I think this is great for him and great for St. John’s. He will do well,” Attles said.
Another supporter is former Knicks President …Donnie Walsh who had Mullin in Indiana …
“Mully’s coaching basketball every day,” said another member of New York’s basketball royalty, Donnie Walsh, who as the Pacers GM traded for Mullin. “He’s out there every day with guys showing them how to do things. He’s got a lot of knowledge. And he’s played for some of the greatest coaches there are. He’s definitely qualified.
“From St. John’s standpoint, he’s a great get. He’s the kind of guy who identifies the whole program. He was one of their greatest players. He went on to be a great pro player and he’s a really good basketball man,” Walsh said of the original Dream Team member. “He’ll be great at it.”
Lou Carnesecca, Mullin’s former coach at St. John’s, told ESPN.com’s Ian O’Connor that he offered the new coach of the Red Storm some advice.
“We talked, and you have to understand this is a big thing for Chris, a major, major step,” Carnesecca said. “He had a good thing going [in Sacramento], where he could come and go as he wants. Now it’s a vocation. This is no longer a job, it’s a vocation.”
Carnesecca also believes Mullin has the makings of a good coach.
“People worry about the lack of experience, but Chris has been around so many great players and coaches,” Carnesecca said. “I told him, ‘If you ever stopped and wrote down everything you know about basketball, you would fill volumes.’ ”
“I’m just delighted [by Mullin’s hiring], and I think a lot of people feel the same way,” Carnesecca said. “I think this is the most popular choice ever at St. John’s.”
There is no doubt he is a popular hire, now he has to become the right hire to take St John’s further than they have been under former coach Steve Lavin.