Marc Stein of ESPN.com wrote early Wednesday morning…
“The Oklahoma City Thunder have formally commenced discussions about their vacant coaching job with Florida coach Billy Donovan, according to league sources.
“Sources told ESPN.com that Donovan and Thunder general manager Sam Presti have opened a dialogue about the position, which became available a week ago after the dismissal of Scott Brooks.”
Since the firing of Brooks, Donovan has been a prominent name mentioned to take the job with the Thunder. According to the RESPN report, Donovan is the only coach that has formally talked with the team and it is unclear if Presti will interview anyone else for the job.
Yahoo! Sports reported Wednesday afternoon that the Thunder and Donovan have begun discussing the framework of a contract and both sides are optimistic it can be completed. Earlier Wednesday, the same outlet reported that Oklahoma City was preparing an offer for Donovan and "pushing for him to accept the job as head coach." The report also said it could take a $6 million offer to get Donovan, who makes over $4 million at Florida. Yahoo! Sports reported that Presti flew to Florida on Tuesday to meet with Donovan and that a formal offer is expected soon.
It is also documented that Donovan has a great relationship with Presti and has lost two program assistants to the Thunder due to that relationship and the trust Presti has in the Gator coach.
Eight years ago Donovan made the jump to the NBA’s Orlando Magic and was introduced as the Magic’s head coach before changing his tune a couple of days later and returning as the Gators’ head coach.
Although he has yet to accept the Thunder job opening, it seems very unlikely Donovan would back away from it if he does indeed accept the job.
Stay tuned to Scout.com as we continue to cover this ongoing news story.