Carlisle says he won’t return as Mavericks coach

Rick Carlisle — who led Dallas to the 2011 NBA championship — informed Mavericks owner Mark Cuban on Thursday that he won’t be returning as coach next season, Carlisle told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Carlisle had two years left on his contract. He spent 13 seasons as Mavericks coach.

“‘After a number of in-person conversations with [owner] Mark Cuban over the last week, today I informed him that I will not be returning as head coach of the Dallas Mavericks. This was solely my decision,” Carlisle said in a statement to ESPN. “My family and I have had an amazing 13-year experience working with great people in a great city.”

Carlisle added that he’s “excited about the next chapter of my coaching career.”

Cuban told ESPN’s Tim MacMahon: “I truly love Rick Carlisle. He was not only a good coach but also a friend and a confidant. Our relationship was so much more than basketball. And I know that won’t ever change.”

Carlisle’s announcement comes after the team said on Wednesday that longtime president of basketball operations and general manager Donnie Nelson was out after 24 seasons with the franchise.

Nelson’s departure came after internal friction due to the increasing decision-making influence of Mavericks director of quantitative research and development Haralabos Voulgaris, sources told ESPN.

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