The Detroit Pistons have started their search for a new head coach following Dwane Casey’s announcement that he will be taking on a front-office position.
According to reports from The Athletic, the team is considering interviewing high-level assistant coaches and will not be in a rush to make a hire.
The organization is adopting a patient approach with the intention of assessing the available talent pool.
This includes top coaches from teams in the NBA playoffs who might become available.
As expected, the Detroit Pistons have been actively seeking a new head coach and have reportedly interviewed several top assistant coaches, including Charles Lee from the Milwaukee Bucks and Jarron Collins from the New Orleans Pelicans.
Another candidate that has emerged as a front-runner is Kevin Ollie, who is currently coaching with Overtime Elite.
Blaming The Coach
The NBA coaching landscape has seen some recent changes, with Mike Budenholzer of the Milwaukee Bucks and Monty Williams of the Phoenix Suns being in the spotlight.
Bucks fired Mike following a first-round loss to the Heat, and Williams received some criticism for his team’s performance in the playoffs.
On the one hand, the Suns put up a valiant effort against the top-ranked Denver Nuggets, led by MVP Nikola Jokic.
However, in an elimination game, they fell behind by nearly 20 points after the first quarter, ultimately contributing to their defeat.
Either way, Monty Williams is the scapegoat for the Phoenix Suns losing in the conference semi-finals.
Williams Fired After 4 Seasons
The Phoenix Suns made the surprising decision to part ways with head coach Monty Williams on Saturday, just two years after reaching the NBA Finals and a year after he was named the Coach of the Year.
While Williams had an impressive regular season record, winning 63% of his games in his four seasons with the Suns, the team’s lack of success in the playoffs likely played a significant role in his dismissal.
The Suns were eliminated from the playoffs in each of the last three seasons, and in two straight years, they trailed by 30 points at halftime of elimination games played at home.
Detroit Pistons Hiring Monty Williams?
The rumors of Williams to Detroit have been persistent, and the vibes just feel right.
There has been speculation within the NBA community that his dismissal from the Suns could make him a potential candidate for the Detroit Pistons head coaching vacancy.
Williams appears to be a strong fit for the Pistons not only in terms of his coaching abilities but also his shared vision and approach to team-building with General Manager Troy Weaver.
Williams’ coaching style, emphasis on player development, and focus on establishing a winning culture align well with Weaver’s philosophy and strategy for building a competitive team.
Plus, one is without a coach, and another is without a job, so it will be a day or two before we hear the news about them signing a contract.
Potential Replacement For Monty Willams In The Suns?
As the Phoenix Suns begin their search for a new head coach following the departure of Monty Williams, there will likely be no shortage of high-profile candidates vying for the opportunity to lead a team with championship aspirations.
I mean, they are a title contender on paper going into the 2023-23 season, with stars such as Kevin Durant and Devin Booker on the roster.
Here are five candidates that could make sense for the job.
1. Nick Nurse
Nick Nurse’s recurrent appearance on NBA coaching candidate lists is unsurprising, given his impressive track record and skills in the field.
2. Jordi Fernández
Jordi Fernández, an assistant coach for the Sacramento team, has already been interviewed by the Toronto Raptors this offseason.
Considering the Suns’ interest in bringing in a new perspective, Fernández could be an excellent choice to join their coaching staff, given his promising trajectory.
3. Sam Cassell
With the 76ers currently fighting for a spot in the Eastern Conference finals, it’s worth acknowledging the pivotal role played by Sam Cassell.
A longtime trusted assistant of Doc Rivers, Cassell has been a fixture on the sidelines since 2014. His extensive experience as a three-time NBA champion player only adds to his impressive resume.
Considering the Suns’ search for a coach with proven bench and court expertise, Cassell’s name should definitely be in the conversation.
4. Kevin Young
The Suns may already have a strong candidate within their organization to succeed Williams.
Phoenix associate coach Kevin Young could be an easy transitional candidate for the team.
5. Mike Budenholzer
Milwaukee just let Mike Budenholzer go, but the Suns might be intrigued by the coach that beat them in the NBA Finals in 2021.
Budenholzer could find himself leading a team with even more talent in Phoenix than he had during his time in Milwaukee.
Given the Suns’ efforts to bolster their roster this offseason, the team is likely to become an even more formidable force in the league.