Hornets coach Steve Clifford taking medical leave


Hornets coach Steve Clifford missed the team's home game against the Magic Tuesday (AEDT) and will be away from the team for an indefinite period of time because of issues with his health, the team announced Thursday (AEDT). In the meantime, assistant coach Stephen Silas will coach the Hornets.

The Hornets didn't give any further specifics out of respect for Clifford.

The Hornets (9-13) are third in the Southeast Division, three games behind Washington. Silas' primary task will be helping Charlotte turn around its road woes, considering the Hornets are 1-10 away from home this season. The team announced that Clifford is taking a medical leave of absence. There is no timetable set for his return.

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The 56-year-old Clifford took over as Charlotte's head coach during the 2013-14 campaign and led the club to a surprising 43 wins and a playoff appearance.

Good thoughts to Steve Clifford, a delightful guy, an absolute grinder, and a coach always willing to talk the nitty-gritty stuff. Charlotte hosts Golden State on Wednesday night (8 p.m., ESPN).