Former NBA Champion Nick Nurse Lands Job With NBA Finals Contender: Report
By Jason Hall
May 29, 2023
Former Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse has reportedly "reached an agreement to become the next coach of the Philadelphia 76ers," according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, citing sources with knowledge of the situation.
Nurse, who led the Raptors to their first and only NBA championship in franchise history in 2019, went 41-41 during the 2022-23 season, having missed the playoffs for the second time in the past three seasons.
"ESPN Sources: Nick Nurse has reached an agreement to become the next coach of the Philadelphia 76ers. Nurse — who won an NBA championship and a coach of year award with Toronto — now gets to coach the 2023 MVP Joel Embiid," Wojnarowski tweeted.
Nurse was initially hired by Toronto as an assistant in 2013, working under his predecessor, Dwane Casey, for six seasons. The 55-year-old was promoted to head coach during the 2018 offseason, just prior to the Raptors' acquisition of Kawhi Leonard in a trade with the San Antonio Spurs.
Toronto finished the 2018-19 regular season with a 58-24 record and defeated the Orlando Magic in five games; the Philadelphia 76ers in seven games; the Milwaukee Bucks in six games; and the Golden State Warriors in six games during the postseason. Nurse was named NBA Coach of the Year in 2020 after leading the Raptors to a 53-19 regular-season record, despite losing Leonard in free agency the following offseason.
The Iowa native held several head coaching jobs internationally, as well as in the NBA G League, before joining the Raptors in 2013.
The Sixers dismissed former head coach Doc Rivers on May 16. Rivers, 61, went 154-82 (.653 winning percentage), which included 54 wins, which included 54 wins in 2022-23 -- the most since the Sixers' Eastern Conference championship season in 2000-01 -- and making the playoffs each year, but never advancing past the Eastern Conference Semifinals.