Nick Friedell ESPN Staff Writer
Clifford said that Thibodeau has made himself a better coach during his time off from basketball.
"I think what he's done is exactly what I thought he would do is I think he used it to grow as a coach," Clifford said. "We talk regularly and when you talk to him -- he's an expert on this league. He's using this to study teams, study trends, study players. He's always been on top of it anyway, but a sabbatical, it's not like he's -- he's relaxing and doing different things like that, but he's studying. He'll be an even better coach when he comes back."