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Raptors reportedly fire head coach Nick Nurse after five seasons

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The Toronto Raptors have fired head coach Nick Nurse, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic.

The Raptors went 41-41 this season and advanced to the play-in tournament, but were eliminated by the Chicago Bulls in one game and missed the playoffs.

Nurse originally joined the Raptors in 2013 as an offensive assistant under then-head coach Dwayne Casey, and was promoted to head coach after Casey was fired five years later. Nurse went 390-227 in five seasons as Raptors head coach. In his first year as head coach, he led the Raptors to their first NBA championship in franchise history and was named NBA Coach of the Year for the 2019-2020 season. He took the Raptors to the playoffs a total of three times, but was unable to repeat his first-year success again.

Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Milwaukee Bucks on March 19, 2023 in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Aaron Gash)

According to ESPN, former Boston Celtics head coach Ime Udoka is being looked at as a possible candidate to replace Nurse. Udoka was suspended by the Celtics for the entire 2022-2023 season after breaking the team number rule, effectively in February when interim replacement Joe Mazura was given the full-time position. dismissed.

Working for the Raptors was Nurse’s first job in the NBA, and he has never worked for another team. But as a championship-winning coach, his services will be in demand. ESPN reported that Nurse is likely to be interviewed in the Houston Rockets’ head coaching search, which recently fired Steven Cyrus.

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