Hours after confirming their fourth first-round elimination in five years, the Portland Trail Blazers and coach Terry Stotts have decided to break their nine-season NBA bond. The technician leaves the Oregon franchise as the second coach with the most wins in team history (402-318).
Under his command, Portland has chained eight consecutive playoff appearances, the longest streak currently in the US league. The traumatic loss in Game 6 against the Denver Nuggets early Friday morning left Stotts’ project dead.
“It has been a difficult decision on a personal and professional level, but it is in the best interest of the franchise to go in another direction”said Neil Olshey, president of the franchise’s basketball operations. “Terry will always hold a special place in the Trail Blazer family and the Portland community.”
Stotts reached Western Conference Finals in 2019 with Damian Lillard as his reference on the track all these years. It also reached twice the Conference Semifinals. The coach had one year of guaranteed contract left.
The Clippers’ assistant coach Chauncey billups, former Knicks and Rockets coach Jeff van gundy, the Nets assistant Mike D’Antoni and the Michigan state coach Juwan Howard are among the candidates for the head coach position in Oregon.