Raptors assistant Nurse promoted to head coach


Nurse has spent the past five seasons as an assistant coach with the Raptors under Casey.

The Toronto Raptors will name assistant Nick Nurse as their next head coach, ESPN.com's Adrian Wojnarowski reports.

Nurse and the Raptors were completing contract terms on Tuesday, according to the person who spoke to AP on condition of anonymity because the agreement had not been announced.

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Casey, meanwhile, has already found his next job: with the Detroit Pistons. Nevermind that Casey is a legitimate contender for Coach of the Year-General Manager Masai Ujiri felt the team needed a new leader. External candidates included San Antonio Spurs assistants Ettore Messina and Ime Udoka, former Atlanta Hawks head coach Mike Budenholzer (who was hired by the Milwaukee Bucks on May 17) and EuroLeague coach Sarunas Jasikevicius. Casey was sacked after the Raptors were swept out of the second round of this year's playoffs by Cleveland. He also won a pair of titles in the G League with two different teams and was coach of the year there, too. His path to an National Basketball Association head coaching job is unconventional, to say the least.

The 50-year-old Nurse is known for his offensive skills as a coach, winning the D-League championship in 2010-11 and 2012-13 before joining the Raptors.

"I leave here with my head high", he told TSN via text message in May.