Raptors promote Nurse to head coach after five-years as an assistant

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

The Toronto Raptors have promoted Nick Nurse as the team’s new bench leader. He replaces Dwane Casey, who was let go at the end of the season.

Before this new promotion, Nurse was an assistant with the Raptors for the previous five seasons. He is now the ninth head coach in team history.

Basketball (Photo by Pixabay)

“Nick is an innovative coach who has a tremendous basketball IQ, and a unique approach to the xʼs and oʼs,” Raptors President Masai Ujiri said. “We’ve valued his creativity and dedication as he focused on making our offense one of the best in the NBA, and we believe that he will bring those qualities to his new role as head coach. This is an exciting and important season for the Raptors, and I believe Nickʼs strong leadership and focus on winning are qualities which will help lead us to our ultimate goal, which is a championship.”

According to the Raptors, he helped have a top 10 offensive attack three of the last five seasons.

In 2017-18 when Nurse was an assistant coach, the team scored a franchise-high 111.7 points per game. They also made a franchise-high 968 three-pointers on the season.

“Iʼm proud to take on the role of head coach of the Toronto Raptors, and to continue to work with the exceptional players we have here,” Nurse said. “Iʼm grateful to Masai, Bobby, Larry Tanenbaum and the MLSE ownership for this opportunity. Toronto and the Raptors organization has been my home for the past five years, and I’ve watched this group grow and succeed together. Iʼm looking forward to more of that this season, and to working towards our shared goal, which is to earn the right to call ourselves NBA Champions.”

Before joining the Raptors, he spent two seasons as the Rio Grande Valley Vipers head coach. He also was the Iowa Energy head coach, as well.

Both the Vipers and the Energy compete in the NBA’s developmental league. As a head coach of the teams, he had an 183-117 regular-season record, which is second all-time in NBA G League history.

Nurse guided two separate teams to the NBA G League Championship in 2011 and 2013. He’s the only coach in G League history to accomplish this feat.

In addition, he also has coaching stops at Northern Iowa, Derby Rams, Grand View, South Dakota, Birmingham Bullets, Telindus Oostende, Manchester Giants, London Towers, Oklahoma Storm, and the Brighton Bears.

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